Linear TV is still very much here to stay despite the influx of OTT options. Linear is still aspirational, builds trust and accounts for over 75% of big screen viewing. But, it does have competition in the current AV landscape.
The cost-of-living crisis has created the perfect stage for the rise of AVOD.
- Lloyds Bank have seen 1.2m subscriptions cancelled. 47.1% are TV Streaming services
- ITV announced its enhanced AVOD service ITVX will launch in-time for the World Cup
- Disney+ announced an ad-supported US version for late 2022
- Netflix, who said they would never run ads, revealed in 2 years we’ll see an ad supported tier
- Amazon rebranded IMDB to Amazon Freevee, ahead of a massive content push
- Not forgetting the other 35 AVOD platforms including Samsung TV+, Roku, Rakuten and Pluto TV
How do we make sense of this fast developing and increasingly cluttered marketplace?
Broadcaster VOD is AVOD (Ad Funded VOD) created by ITV, C4 & Sky, showing their content across different devices. It is relatively well established and you can expect to see;
- Well-known brands and high-quality content
- A multitude of audience targeting routes
- ITV’s Planet V providing the first self-service interface
- The imminent launch of CFlight – Linear & BVOD combined measurement across all screens
CFlight allows TV Planners and Buyers to fully understand what incremental reach BVOD adds to a linear schedule, which in turn justifies Advertiser investment!
App based AVOD Platforms such as Samsung TV+, Roku, Rakuten and Pluto TV, are defined as CTV (Connected TV Services) This area is still developing and the topline is;
- Bought via IO or Programmatically
- Many FAST channels (Free Ad-Supported Streaming TV Services) – Specific content running many series of 1 programme – strong context for right brand
- Limited audience targeting options
- Reaches younger light TV viewers
- Volumes low
- Limited measurement data
CTV is behind BVOD but it is important not to forget, Samsung are collecting data from 7m TV’s in the UK, Xumo one of the largest channels is owned by Comcast who also own Sky, Pluto TV is owned by Viacom, Rakuten is huge in Japan and Asia; all companies & markets with deep pockets and access to content, they will catch up if it makes commercial sense.
What does the future hold?
- More high-quality content, more ways to watch it, when and where you want to watch it
- AVOD fixed pricing will bring some stability to a challenging TV market
- Initial fragmentation will lead to consolidation
- Those with the will and the deepest pockets should come out on top
All of the above will soon have to compete with Disney+, Netflix and Amazon. And, the battle for AVOD is just starting, but will move quickly, certainly one to watch.