Nielsen recently published a report entitled Video on Demand: How Worldwide Video Viewing Habits are Evolving Amid an Evolving Media Landscape. The report reveals that 68% of North Americans don’t mind viewing advertisements as long as doing so allows them to stream quality programming for free. This probably isn’t surprising, as YouTube and other OTT services have already proven the concept.
However, the same study also shows that 68% of the same group think that the advertisements they watched on streaming services are irrelevant to them. The mismatch between the displayed ads and their relevance to the viewers indicates that there is an opportunity to deliver properly targeted advertisements to viewers who want free content. It is also logical to believe that the ad consumption habits of the Video on Demand (VOD) users surveyed would largely apply to broadcast viewers, as well.
The next-generation television standard ATSC 3.0 offers targeted advertising capability that can capitalize on the opportunity that Nielsen’s report revealed. The ATSC 3.0 system can be adapted by the broadcaster to collect users’ viewing preferences and their ad viewing patterns for measurement and analytics (for viewers that opt-in to such data collection). For certain second-screen viewing configurations, ATSC 3.0 might even be able to measure conversion and attribution. Armed with the personalized targeting information and the technical capability to target individual viewers, broadcasters can leverage the opportunity of delivering relevant advertisements to viewers who are willing to watch them along with the free content (i.e., viewers who are likely to opt-in to the data collection feature of the system).
Although video consumption habits are changing in terms of delivery mechanism and display, viewers’ interest in watching quality content for free is still substantial. ATSC 3.0 offers tools for broadcasters to tap into the new opportunities created by the shifting habits of television viewers.