Recent study Video Monetisation Report (VMR) 2018, launched by FreeWheel, a Comcast company and advertising management solution, shows that evolution of premium video advertising in Europe is constantly evolving and is driven by the growing popularity of live sports content and streaming services.
Viewers Are Empowered Across Multiple Endpoints
For advertisers today is difficult to build a media plan, which incorporates all devices as there are too many differences in platform capabilities that premium video viewers are using. This type of viewer is expecting control as well as the variety of choices when it comes to how, when and where they are able to watch the content.
In Q1 2018, 50% of ad views were consumed on the big screen (OTT and STB VOD combined), 24% on desktop, and 27% on tablet and smartphone combined, demonstrating the demand for content across all endpoints.
The big screen is still the most effective platform to bring viewers together around popular content. One of the most notable trends presented in the study was the growth of live viewing on smartphones, which was up 171%. Viewers are willing to consume live content wherever they are, demonstrating the universal appeal of this format and justifying why so many publishers are investing in developing unique live content experiences.
The Big Screen is the Platform of Choice
The study reveals that among European viewers, the big screen (OTT and STB VOD combined) has taken the largest share of ad views at 38% for the second quarter in a row. The percentage grew for OTT up to 75% and up to 104% for STB VOD. In the meantime, Ad views on smartphones and tablets grew at a slower rate.
Viewers of premium content in Europe are moving away from smaller screens and opting, instead, for the living room experience. Tablet ad views for premium video have plateaued (down 2% year-overyear), while mobile ad views experienced double-digit growth (19% year-over-year). Desktop, similar to the U.S., still holds strong with 34% of ad views and a growth rate of 16%.
The data on format composition by device demonstrates the importance of full-episode viewing across all devices. For mobile and desktop devices, clips content from a larger share of ad views. Live content shows high-levels of growth but most notably on OTT and smartphone devices as premium publishers take advantage of the ability to dynamically insert advertising in live streams.
The authors of the study foresee that live share will continue to increase as publishers test the waters of ad insertion into simulcast events, particularly sports.
Although the advertising is year over year more competitive and complicated, the premium video continues to grow in the U.S. as well as in Europe.
Premium video publishers carry on with innovations in an effort to combine the benefits of television with the capabilities of digital. They are enabling more content on more endpoints and improving audience targeting and measurement capabilities. Premium video is well-positioned to address consumers’ concern for data protection and marketers’ desire for brand safety.
To maintain momentum, authors of the study stated that ad-supported premium video must continue to evolve its value proposition and to compete with the rise of subscription-based models as well as the wider digital market.
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