If we trace the transformations within video content history we can outline the following milestones: 2016 was the year when video advertising saw a surge in popularity, beyond being simply one of the content marketing formats. In 2017, video confidently moved to the top of the marketing tactics list. And 2018 was a truly triumphant year: video transformed from a singular tactic to a full-fledged robust business strategy. Let’s have a look at the major trends to be observed throughout the current year.
Shift to the ad-supported model
If today the streaming video market is subscription-based, we expect the shift toward an ad-supported market. This transformation is not limited to the model being self-supportive, which is 100% true, but also happens because of the huge amount of subscription fatigue we witness today. People around the world are overloaded with subscriptions here and there, but in fact, they are watching only several programs on each of these channels. In other words, the change will transform the streaming video ecosystem to a great extent. Apparently, Amazon will be the first to experience the shift because the business is ad-supported, and one of the main reasons for that is that the company wanted to be closer to the ad/media community which pushes the business forward.
Transition to CTV
Speaking of linear television, ratings are the sufficient measurement of its success or failure — they reflect exactly how many people watch a TV program. Basically, it matters due to the fact that it gives a clear idea of how many people saw the ads displayed at that time. Week by week increasing numbers of households consume a growing percentage of TV time-shifting to CTV — connected television. With the transition to CTV, a vast variety of the shows, regardless of the broadcast time, will contain different ads tailored with regard to each particular household. This will make the good old rating system irrelevant with the passage of time, and advertisers will use other metrics to gauge reach.
More paid content
Throughout 2019 we will see a great influx of paid content. In the age of deep personalization, many people still resort to the one-size-fits-all notion and think if something works for one, it will definitely work for the others. Nowadays, the dominant majority — around 75% — of streaming video content is consumed via four major services — YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. Netflix and Amazon Prime are for-pay and no-ad services (however, Amazon is marred by promos), and YouTube and Hulu are for-pay for ad-free viewing. Many of the paid services that will be rolled out in the nearest future are expected to fail, and people will experience a phenomenon called Netflix fatigue.
Usage of OTT channels
Over-the-top devices aka OTT reached their peak in 2018. This year the hype will grow even bigger and OTTs will unleash their full potential. The main feature of OTT that makes it special is that it can be connected to the TV or functionality within TV in order to make things easier in terms of delivering Internet-based video content. OTT devices are not a new thing and this year is going to be dedicated to unlocking their potential in the world of digital advertising. Thus, we will see agencies and marketers working with OTT in the form of YouTube ads being broadcast on TV. As soon as premium content is all about views, OTT will be of much help here, and the most prominent companies will be working on multiple OTT channels.
Investments in data management
Naturally, each and every innovation cannot avoid the hands of bad users, and the video advertising ecosystem is no exception — not that we are very surprised. The video advertising format is so popular and has higher rates than other ad types, so cases of fraud are pervasive and they happen nearly twice as often as, let’s say, display format. So fraudulent activity has been detected in this area, and measures are being taken to combat illicit activity. These transparency efforts and regulation will drive huge investments in data management throughout 2019, and today we see the first initiatives in that direction. For instance, ads.txt and ads.cert protocols are used to prevent domain spoofing via signalling to buyers about inventory authorized by the seller. Also, we will see the development of more SPO (supply path optimization) tools to combat fraudulent bid requests.
Increased reliance on native auto-play videos
Advertisers will extensively resort to native auto-play videos as one of the best and most effective practices. Audiences will access the most credible video content from the top demand-side platforms. This tool is the exact opposite of traditional intrusive outstream videos as it lets the users engage naturally, while the publishers receive another video revenue source. Our company offers various video formats to fit any site and meet business goals. Native videos are the next step forward for high-quality and effective video advertising for a number of reasons: this format is beneficial for the publishers, it is less intrusive as compared with outstream or instream videos, and it is capable of detecting other videos on the page so that it does not run in parallel with competing vids. In the realm of unbelievable fraud rates in adtech, native videos ensure advertisers know where their videos are — it means more trust and safety within the ecosystem.
Apart from the new trends listed above, the ones rolled out in 2018 will continue to develop — more personalization, improved targeting, and adherence to consumer behavior shifts as a market differentiator. In addition to that, advertisers will seek ways to make their video advertising strategies more agile and flexible. Capturing the audience’s attention and staying relevant demands having the scoop of the hottest video advertising trends, especially given the area is rapidly changing.