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Adjust’s Gijsbert Pols: Marketers Can Get Measurable Results from the Streaming Revolution

Connected TV isn’t new. Whether you call it connected TV, OTT, or VOD, articles about cord-cutting have been making claims and predictions about the future of linear TV and the dominance of streaming services for years — but it all came to a head in 2020 as the confluence of a global pandemic and mobile dominance came together to create the perfect conditions for streaming video to take center stage. Nielsen streaming data shows that consumers spent more than 123 billion minutes Streaming video content in just one week in July 2020. That is 33% more than the previous year at the same time.

This presents a massive opportunity for marketers who have not yet tapped the connected TV and mobile streaming audiences — but it also presents challenges. That’s why in this episode of “There Is No New Normal,” our host Peggy Anne Salz talked to Gijsbert Pols from Adjust. He’s responsible for the strategic product development and working on OTT subscriptions and super apps.

Marketers need to meet their audiences where they are — on the platforms they prefer — and increasingly, that’s connected TV. Gijsbert says that the most shocking numbers he has seen suggest advertisers who focus solely on linear TV “will miss at least one-third of their U.S. audiences.” Smart marketers will take advantage of this trend before the competition does.

The best of both worlds

Television has long been an example of the highest quality content. High barriers to entry meant that brands had to spend big bucks on advertising around popular network shows, but with the “addressability and the accountability that comes with being connected to the internet,” connected TVs and streaming services combine the best of both worlds.

It also allows marketers to bring the power of personalization to TV. Gijsbert points to a path-breaking example of what can happen when advertisers can personalize and localize marketing in real-time for viewers. He recalls how China’s Tencent is doing this now and the massive impact it can have in the future. In practice, Tencent is integrating ads into the video content and localizing it to the audience.

For example, viewers in Berlin see and experience brands differently than viewers in New York. It’s easy to imagine scenarios where advertisers can insert their posters and ads into the background decor on The Big Bang or flash their shops and logos during a riveting action scene in a film such as Suicide Squad.

As Gijsbert sees it: “This opens the door for marketers to insert their brand in the conversation and measure the results.” But there are serious shortcomings if marketers take a wrong turn.

Traditional measurement options developed for linear TV may not measure up to the mobile moment. Gijsbert says, “it’s limited to measuring branding results” but in the interactive world of streaming, there is so much more data to take in. To really understand the added value that connected TVs present, he says you will need to incorporate new measurement options.

“We are enclosing advertising served on connected TV as a measurable ad source for mobile marketers,” says Gijsbert. When you advertise on OTT services, it’s basically throwing money into the dark and that’s something we want to change.” By partnering with some of the biggest OTT services, Adjust brings streaming measurement to advertisers and surfaces the true value of connected ads.

Branching out beyond programming

As with most digital platforms, the sky’s the limit when it comes to the content.

“It is very similar to mobile,” Gijsbert says. ”When you have a mobile phone with Android, you have various apps on it.” The same is true of a connected TV. Apps, such as Netflix or Hulu, are still the way most people interact with their connected TVs, but new verticals are emerging all the time.

Smart content creators are looking past movies and TV shows, and branching out into fitness, games, and even adding social components to their apps, according to Gijsbert. The opportunities are real, and much like mobile, always evolving. However, Gijsbert points to three findings from Adjust’s latest research that marketers should be aware of.

  1. Cord-cutting is real, but so is subscription fatigue — People have a limit when it comes to the number of subscriptions they are willing to pay for, which opens up opportunities for ad-driven apps.
  2. Mobile doesn’t always mean “mobile” — Gijsbert says, “almost 50% of the consumers in our survey indicated that they used mobile devices more for streaming since the pandemic.” That means even when people are watching on their phones, they’re often at home.
  3. Dual screening is the norm — “Over 80% of people use their mobile devices while watching TV,” says Gijsbert. “Now this goes further. We even found out that a substantial amount of people check FinTech apps while watching television and that’s a very important phenomenon.”

To learn more about Adjust’s findings, what they mean, and how you can apply them, tune in to the entire interview.



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