No one disputes the unprecedented changes occurring across the media and entertainment landscape. Content production continues to set new all-time highs each year. Streaming, once an offering confined to a limited number of players, has been adopted by all the major media companies, therefore ensuring it will be the dominant distribution method of the future. Data and artificial intelligence (AI) now play a prominent role across the field, from production choices to advertising targeting and measurement of business results. We can formulate what the end-game future of the entertainment industry looks like, but the real challenge for entertainment marketers is how to manage through the transition. To do this effectively requires straddling two worlds with one foot firmly planted in each while having the flexibility and agility to balance between the two.
Entertainment marketers’ primary goal has been to drive audiences to their shows on linear TV and that will continue to be the case for the foreseeable future. However, with viewership on advertising-supported video on demand (AVOD) streaming services reaching scale and significant advertising spend moving to them, marketers need to wear multiple hats and develop sophisticated marketing and audience targeting strategies to drive tune-in to a show on linear, streaming or both. Combined with the wealth of content now available, the challenges of content marketing have never been greater.
TiVo continues to develop innovative, data-driven promotional capabilities to support content marketers through this industry transition. TiVo’s Sponsored Discovery offering allows marketers to boost their show or movie to the premier position within a content-recommendation carousel. TiVo powers its recommendations using sophisticated machine-learning algorithms and a wealth of content metadata to correctly deliver the right content to the right viewer at the right time. This native, context-rich environment allows marketers to promote their shows during the viewer’s critical content discovery journey. Combined with audience targeting, Sponsored Discovery consistently delivers high double-digit tune-in conversion to a live airing on linear, catch-up on DVR or VOD, or to drive a transaction with a newly released feature film.
As streaming adoption continues to grow, marketers need to reach those streaming audiences outside of traditional cable TV platforms. Just last month, TiVo introduced its new device, Stream 4K, which extends TiVo’s expertise in helping consumers find, watch and enjoy content. Stream 4K is packaged with thousands of ad-supported content titles from the TiVo+ content network that help marketers deliver their promotional messages through Connected TV (CTV) video advertising.
But marketers must also prove that promoting via CTV advertising has value and can deliver audiences to their valuable new show premieres on linear platforms. To measure this effectiveness, TiVo brings to bear its wealth of TV viewership data to measure incremental reach delivered from CTV as well as tune-in conversion.
For example, in partnership with a leading content marketer, TiVo measured the impact of a combined linear and CTV promotional campaign. The results revealed that the CTV portion of the campaign delivered more than 10% reach, while those viewers who saw the promotion only on CTV had a tune-in conversion nearly five times greater than those who saw the same promotion on linear.
As viewers continue to fragment across different platforms, content marketers face complex challenges of how to appropriately allocate their promotional budgets across media channels. The combination of viewership data in both linear TV and CTV along with CTV promotional opportunities help marketers find the right mix to reach linear-intensive and CTV-intensive audiences. With its capabilities in the traditional cable TV world and its growing footprint in the streaming world, TiVo has myriad ways to support content marketers as they navigate and actively manage the transition of content promotion from the past to the future.
Walt Horstman is senior vice president and general manager of data and advertising at Xperi.