The streaming revolution is upon us, and it’s ad-supported streaming that’s leading the charge. But just how much of the market share does it actually account for? According to industry expert Brian Wieser, the answer is not as straightforward as we might think.

In a recent analysis, Wieser dug deep into the data to determine just how much ad-supported streaming is growing and what share it truly accounts for. The results are surprising. If we exclude YouTube’s connected TV app from a definition of TV viewing (as most TV advertisers would), Wieser calculates that around 14% of ad-supported TV viewing occurs on ad-supported streaming content, up from around 9% of ad-supported TV viewing two years ago. But when we include YouTube’s CTV app, the figures rise to 23% in the most recent data and under 15% around this time in 2021.

These numbers are significantly lower than Nielsen’s headline figures, which suggest that more like 40% of TV viewing occurs via streaming. However, Wieser notes that the differences are primarily explained by the massive volumes of TV viewing that are not ad-supported. It’s a function of streaming’s relatively modest share of “TV”viewing time . Another factor is the generally lower ad clutter ratios you see on many ad-supported services. Also, streaming CPMs are considerably higher than cable, which still remains the main generator of “linear TV” GRPs.

So what does this mean for advertisers? In the short term, it may pose a problem, but in the long term, we will likely see more AVOD/FAST viewing, more commercial clutter, and lower CPMs in streaming as it becomes more and more like “linear TV.” The two will fully merge into one media platform with a preponderance of viewing by older folks and low brows—just like “TV” was before the advent of streaming.

The growth of ad-supported streaming and its impact on campaign reach is a critical issue that marketers must monitor closely. As more consumers shift away from traditional TV viewing towards streaming content, marketers who rely heavily on ad-supported television must reassess their media strategies.

One of the biggest challenges for marketers is the fact that growing numbers of consumers may be unreachable through ad-supported TV. This means that marketers must explore new avenues to reach these audiences, such as including most of YouTube, TikTok, and other forms of online video beyond the television set in their definition of television.

However, it’s not just about expanding the definition of television. Marketers may also need to focus on managing reach across multiple channels to ensure that they are reaching their target audiences effectively. This could involve shifting away from the traditional metric of reach and exploring other objectives that may be more relevant to the digital landscape.

Ultimately, the key takeaway for marketers is the need to adapt to the changing media landscape. As ad-supported streaming continues to grow in popularity, marketers must be willing to reassess their strategies and explore new avenues to reach their target audiences effectively. This means being open to new metrics, exploring new channels, and staying ahead of the curve when it comes to digital advertising trends. By doing so, they can ensure that their campaigns are reaching the right audiences and delivering the desired results in a rapidly evolving media landscape.

Let’s face it, marketers are obsessed with numbers. They love to measure everything from share of total time spent with different types of TV viewing to the percentage of people who prefer chocolate over vanilla ice cream. But when it comes to ad-supported streaming, there’s a new metric in town, and it’s all about unique reach.

While the share of total time spent with each type of TV viewing is important, it doesn’t tell the whole story. What really matters is whether your ad is reaching the right people, and that’s where unique reach comes in. By focusing on the percentage of people who spend more than a certain amount of time over a given period with different types of ad-supported TV, marketers can get a better sense of the effectiveness of their campaigns.

And when it comes to ad-supported streaming, the news is good. Despite accounting for a smaller share of total viewing time, ad-supported streaming services are more likely to reach a unique audience compared to other types of TV viewing. This means that even if ad-supported streaming only accounts for a small portion of the market share, it can still deliver significant value to advertisers.

It may be tempting to focus solely on the share of total time spent with each type of TV viewing, savvy marketers know that unique reach is the real metric that matters. And when it comes to reaching a unique audience, ad-supported streaming is the place to be. So don’t let the numbers fool you, there’s a new metric in town, and it’s all about reaching the right people at the right time, regardless of how ad-supported streaming is defined.

When it comes to advertising, it’s all about reaching the right people at the right time. And let’s face it, traditional TV advertising can be a bit like throwing a dart blindfolded. Sure, you might hit the target, but more often than not, you’ll miss the mark entirely.

That’s where ad-supported streaming comes in. While it may not account for as much of the market share as we initially thought, its critical advantage is its ability to reach incremental audiences that traditional TV advertising cannot. With ad-supported streaming, you can target your ads to specific demographics, interests, and behaviors, ensuring that your message is reaching the people who are most likely to be interested in what you have to offer.

But here’s the catch: the streaming landscape is constantly evolving, and marketers must be willing to adapt their strategies to keep up. This means staying on top of the latest trends, understanding how audiences are consuming content, and being willing to try new approaches to reach their target audiences.

The good news is that the potential rewards are huge. By embracing ad-supported streaming and adapting their strategies accordingly, marketers can tap into a whole new world of potential customers. So don’t let traditional TV advertising hold you back. Embrace the power of ad-supported streaming and watch your reach soar to new heights.

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