5 min read

Connected TV Vs. OTT Advertising — What’s The Difference?

This post is a part of our “Comprehensive Guide To Connected TV Advertising” — Click here to learn more!

Over the last decade, advertising has experienced some dramatic and revolutionary shifts. The age-old practice has moved from a basic seller/consumer one-way interaction to a much grander, multi-channel, multi-impression engagement. Advertisement has shifted from “catch them with a hook or a jingle” to a targeted, data-driven approach, delivering products and services of interest to a precise audience. 

Television has been a household mainstay for decades,  but is consumed in a markedly different way than just 10 years ago. Viewership hours have been drifting from classic television to Connected TV (CTV) and over-the-top (OTT) outlets. Following this drift, CTV, OTT, and programmatic advertising have become hot topics in the realm of advertising. In addition to following the viewership trends, marketers and advertisers are now able to zero in on their desired target audiences. IE — Less advertising dollars are being wasted on a widespread, shotgun approaches, but the amount of variables that make up a successful campaign have increased significantly.

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So, maybe you are asking yourself,  “What advertising strategies work for Connected TV and OTT?” First, let’s recap and delineate their differences…

What Is The Difference Between Connected TV vs OTT As An Advertiser?

This is a common question and many advertisers initially may think that CTV advertising and OTT advertising are competitive, but that is not the case. 

OTT is any video content that is streamed by users directly from the internet versus passing through cable, broadcast or satellite television providers.  Streaming can occur on PCs and mobile devices in addition to televisions. Streaming platforms include services like TubiTV, Hulu, Prime Video, Sling TV, ATTNow, Philo, Peacock, and many more. 

CTV, on the other hand, represents a subset of OTT, specifically smart televisions with the capability of connecting to the internet. These “connected TVs” are the conduits of OTT. CTV devices include Smart TVs, Roku, Apple TV, Fire TV, and gaming consoles with internet connectivity like Xbox or Playstation.

Why are so many viewers switching from traditional TV to OTT and CTV options? 

Consumers are becoming fatigued and dissatisfied by lack of choice, having to pay for channels they never watch, and the overall high cost of cable. OTT content also has the luxury of being completely on the viewer’s schedule, which adds to the appeal. OTT services provide a wide variety of viewing options and subscription costs which tend to be far less expensive than the cable and satellite alternatives.

As viewers continue to convert to OTT, smart advertisers are allocating more of their budgets and resources towards these platforms.  Following the audience isn’t the only reason for advertisers to shift their strategies. Let’s dive into the extensive benefits of OTT and CTV advertising.

Benefits Of Advertising With OTT & Connected TV

High Completion Rates: OTT advertisements cannot be skipped in most cases, giving advertisers a greater chance of their audience actually watching their ads. For this reason, OTT video ad completion rates are very high.

Conversely, most cable services now offer DVR service, which permits a viewer to fast forward through the advertisements. The consumption of live television has declined and so have the chances of viewers seeing traditional television ads.

Advertisers are able to utilize OTT and CTV for laser-focused audience targeting. Dynamic advertising is available through OTT and CTV, meaning that different audience segments can receive different tailored versions of an ad. In addition to these perks, Strategus offers its unique Attribution Suite, which allows advertisers to see near-real-time data about how consumers engage with your brand/product after ad exposure – including things like sign-ups, purchase and foot-traffic attribution. performing. This data allows advertisers to make tweaks to optimize their ads as needed – quickly!

Limitations of Advertising With OTT & Connected TV

The biggest limitation to both OTT and CTV advertising is navigating strategy. There are many OTT platforms you can choose from with a high potential for audience overlap. This can make it difficult for media buyers that are new to OTT to make strategic decisions. Additionally, analyzing metrics and attributing conversions across multiple OTT channels can be daunting. For these reasons, mapping out information pertinent to targeted advertising can be a lengthy and trying process. Advertisers can experience a steep learning curve when shifting from traditional TV advertising to CTV / OTT advertising.

To help you move through this learning curve quickly, Strategus will help you find the right OTT advertising strategy and help you to understand the process. Our Attribution Suite reveals what ROI is being delivered in near real-time, so you can see exactly what your ad spend is delivering in brand lift and business goals. We make the process transparent and easy to optimize.

Talk To A Strategus OTT Expert

OTT and CTV advertising work because the right message can be delivered to the right consumer at the right time. This data-driven, laser-focused approach is essential for brands hoping to market their products/services in both a cost-efficient and effective manner.

There is no doubt that video consumption will continue to move away from traditional television and into the internet-based realm of OTT/CTV. Advertisers would be wise to take advantage of this shift and the benefits of OTT and CTV. Ready to jump in? Book a free consult with Strategus today. It’s what’s next in data-driven advertising. 

Looking for more great resources on OTT and CTV advertising? Here are a couple we recommend:

G2 OTT Advertising Learning Guide

Tinuiti OTT Advertising Guide

Still have questions about OTT and CTV advertising? Feel free to ask our team! We are happy to help.