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As COVID-19 Boosts Streaming, Advertisers Can’t Sit Out OTT Anymore

Today’s column is written by Joel Cox, co-founder and executive vice president of strategy and innovation at Strategus.

Before the COVID-19 outbreak, many people had already spoken: They want to consume their television media on their time and terms over the internet. In its February report to shareholders, Roku predicted that half of US homes would cut the cable and satellite cords by 2024.

This is accelerating now, with more people under stay-at-home orders and watching TV. They have more time on their hands, less money for subscriptions, no sports and less patience for negative cable news. They are going to watch ad-supported content, but with little tolerance for irrelevance and over-frequency.

For those who weren’t already on board yet with programmatic OTT (over-the-top) connected TV (CTV) advertising, now might be the time to make a move. Nielsen is forecasting that Americans are watching 60% more television. We’re seeing a surge in available inventory and lower eCPMs. Rather than lock in contracts at a set CPM, transacting programmatically allows brands and agencies to take advantage of real-time market shifts like this, where more Americans are streaming at lower costs than we’ve seen in years.

The pressure is on. Will marketers go all-in on OTT? Brand safety and quality concerns have been key factors that have kept some on the sidelines, as well as challenges transacting within walled gardens. But these issues are being addressed with more sophisticated inventory vetting, limiting media buys to premium, long-form content, and by prioritizing inventory agnosticism.

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Andy Dixon is a seasoned Content Writing Specialist at Strategus, renowned for his expertise in creating engaging and impactful digital content. With over a decade of experience in content creation, Andy has honed his skills in a variety of niches, ranging from technology and marketing to education.

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