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Ad-supported video-on-demand, cookieless identity resolution, give CTV advertisers more options

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DistroTV announces Spanish-language ad-supported free streaming bundle


As the connected-TV (CTV) space matures, advertisers are finding more campaign opportunities in ad-supported video-on-demand (AVOD). This week, Yahoo expanded its partnership with Glewed TV, a significant player in AVOD with over 20,000 hours of premium content and display inventory in food, sports, movies, documentaries and other categories.

Glewed TV is now a preferred partner in Yahoo’s supply-side platform. It has also adopted Yahoo’s cookieless identity solution, Yahoo ConnectID, providing identity resolution for display ads.


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Why we care. Ad-supported streaming TV is a much different experience for viewers than Netflix and other ad-less streamers. This makes AVOD a question mark for advertisers without the identity resolution and performance metrics that enable this emerging channel to prove its worth within an omnichannel campaign.

Growing viewership. Viewers are flocking to AVOD, an eMarketer study shows. That’s a promising sign. Over half of video watchers are tapping into AVOD, which means that ad dollars aren’t being wasted.

These numbers are projected to climb even further to over 61% of all U.S. video viewers by 2025, or 165.4 million people. The costs of linear cable, and mounting subscription pricing for streaming services, is expected to attract viewers to free ad-supported alternatives.

“Growth in AVOD ad spend is outpacing other channels and is projected to be worth $47 billion of the global CTV market by 2023,” said Iván Markman, Yahoo Chief Business Officer. “That’s double its 2018 value.”

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Advanced targeting. In addition to identity resolution methods like Yahoo’s ConnectID, advertisers will also be able to take advantage of advances in automatic content recognition (ACR).

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“This will be the year the market fully realizes the value of ACR data – paired with the surge in ad-enabled CTV inventory and content consumption,” said Markman. “Its first-party data is highly beneficial to addressable advertising, incremental reach, and the ability to target streaming viewers outside of a linear campaign. In 2022, more advertisers will proactively seek out planning and buying solutions that include this coveted data.”


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CTV measurement. AVOD isn’t coming out of nowhere. As part of the CTV ecosphere, it benefits from the measurement and analytics advertisers gain by running campaigns through an omnichannel SSP.

“CTV platforms offer advertisers digital-quality targeting, attribution and analytics at scale, while traditional TV provides reach and scale,” said Markman. “Plus, AVOD is a new way to reach TV viewers who don’t subscribe to cable and/or are fans of streaming CTV content.”

He added that for advertisers, AVOD complements traditional TV ad spending.

AVOD and omnichannel campaigns. “The access to Glewed TV’s inventory is in line with our overall approach for our DSP,” Markman explained.

The aim is to provide “multiple dimensions” with AVOD and other ad formats, such as mobile, video, brand integrations, digital-out-of-home (DOOH), audio, and immersive XR (extended reality, including AR and VR).

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Read next: IAB Tech Lab updates ad formats for CTV and digital video

“This is critical for modern marketers who increasingly want to buy all of their media programmatically, through the same, unified platform,” Markman said. “In fact, we are seeing consolidation in the category in an effort to deliver on that demand to advertisers.”

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AVOD audiences. Yahoo is seeing increased interest from advertisers in media and entertainment, retail and e-commerce, pharmaceuticals, automotive and consumer packaged goods.

“These categories are capitalizing on CTV’s growing viewership, as well as its ability to provide deeper personalization, direct consumer relationships and more agile creative,” said Markman. “And while cord-cutters trend younger, AVOD has reached mainstream and is a mainstay across nearly every viewer demographic.”


About The Author

Chris Wood draws on over 15 years of reporting experience as a B2B editor and journalist. At DMN, he served as associate editor, offering original analysis on the evolving marketing tech landscape. He has interviewed leaders in tech and policy, from Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, to former Cisco CEO John Chambers, and Vivek Kundra, appointed by Barack Obama as the country’s first federal CIO. He is especially interested in how new technologies, including voice and blockchain, are disrupting the marketing world as we know it. In 2019, he moderated a panel on “innovation theater” at Fintech Inn, in Vilnius. In addition to his marketing-focused reporting in industry trades like Robotics Trends, Modern Brewery Age and AdNation News, Wood has also written for KIRKUS, and contributes fiction, criticism and poetry to several leading book blogs. He studied English at Fairfield University, and was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He lives in New York.



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Google, NBCUniversal duking it out to be Netflix adtech provider

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Netflix is playing catch-up in the AVOD game

Ads are coming to Netflix, and Google and NBCUniversal are fighting for the lucrative right to provide them.

Why it’s happening. Until recently Netflix’s position as the dominant streaming service allowed it grow revenue without advertising. A subscription price increase earlier this year led to a loss of about 200,000 subscribers. The first loss in more than a decade. Despite this, Netflix says its user base continues to grow. One explanation: Password sharing. That would explain why there are fewer subscribers but more viewers


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The company is now also facing serious challenges from other streaming providers. So, even though its revenue continues to grow, it is looking to bolster them with a lower-priced, ad-supported subscription option. Bringing in Google or NBCUniversal, could make this happen much faster, though it could still be a year or more before it becomes a reality. 

The case for NBCUniversal. It’s likely that a partnership with NBCUniversal would be exclusive. Their ad unit, FreeWheel, would provide the necessary technology to deliver the ads. The NBCUniversal sales team would help to sell the ads across Europe and the US. 

The case for Google. Google brings its own ad platform, which Netflix is currently a customer of. An agreement with Google could mean an exclusive arrangement, but it hasn’t been confirmed. 

Both competitors are currently working with other large brands. A potential deal with Netflix could mean sharing access to its tech partners and audiences. NBCUniversal is the exclusive reseller of ads for Apple News and Apple Stocks since 2017 and has recently expanded into the UK. Google had been providing ad service to the Walt Disney Co. (a previous FreeWheel customer and current Netflix competitor) since 2018.

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What Netflix is saying. Netflix hasn’t provided any details of its plans, how many ads will run, ad targeting, or reach. 

Read the announcement. You can read the article from the Wall Street Journal here.

Why we care. From outside, Netflix’s subscription price increase, the fourth since 2018, seems an odd choice. It was announced at the end of January when inflation was already a growing concern for consumers. Also, viewers were already complaining about decreasing quality in new content while old favorites were no longer available. People are cutting spending and may turn to one of the emerging high-quality, lower-cost competitors.

Those competitors are also either ad-free or offer an ad-free version at a low cost. So an ad-supported Netflix tier may not be all that appealing. It’s rash to second guess a company as successful as Netflix, but this doesn’t seem to be a well-thought-out plan.

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Read next: Why we care about adtech: The complete guide


About The Author

Nicole Farley is an editor for Search Engine Land covering all things PPC. In addition to being a Marine Corps veteran, she has an extensive background in digital marketing, an MBA and a penchant for true crime, podcasts, travel, and snacks.

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