Connected TV: what political campaigns need to know

Learn about Connected TV and how it differs from the programmatic ads you’re probably already running.

Connected TV was the buzzword in the digital ads space in 2018, but due to low scale and the inability to target granularly it failed to attract the same interest as other digital platforms.

Since then technology around CTV targeting has improved and especially with the onset of COVID-19, increased numbers of users have cut the cord with cable tv to rely on applications like Roku, Apple TV, and others to stream. Available CTV inventory space is becoming highly competitive and is the digital ad format to watch in 2020.

In fact, in the U.S Connected TV users are expected to surpass 200 million individuals by the end of 2020.

But what is CTV and how is it different from the programmatic ads you’re probably already running? CTV runs exclusively on TVs either in an app (like the NBA app on an Apple TV) or dynamically inserted into streaming TV content on channels like A&E, AMC, History Channel, MSNBC, ABC, etc.

So, with this projected growth advertisers from all sectors eye CTV as the next battleground, bidding against limited inventory in the hopes of persuading audiences. But what does that mean for political campaigns?

CTV is a prime target for political campaigns given the exponential growth in both reach and inventory over the past couple of years. We’ve been working in this space for over a decade and believe that with the right targeting and data, CTV is an invaluable tool to leverage in conjunction with programmatic video.

Especially during this time of quarantine, with the range of platforms available, these services aren’t limited to any one demographic. In fact according to Forbes, with new platforms coming to the market we’re seeing the exact opposite. Consumers that may have long withstood subscribing to streaming services are now making the switch through this prolonged period of time at home, making CTV a universal platform for reaching voters of all demographics.

At Optimal we pride ourselves in providing the best data and targeting and that same promise extends to CTV. All CTV is matched at the household level which means through a cross-device graph we are able to match your voters’ individual devices like phones and computers within a household and then find associated CTV devices. It’s this improvement in tech that allows us to identify more CTV devices associated with your voters than ever before!

Whether you use our data from Catalist or PDI or your own custom list, we’re still able to match devices down to the household levels better ensuring your ads are reaching the right voters.

CTV is a contested space with both digital and TV media buyers making moves on inventory. However, with the right data your campaign won’t have to worry about wasting dollars on the wrong audience. The key to successful CTV programs: good creative, high match rates, and precision targeting.

Curious about running a CTV campaign? Contact your Optimal representative, or if you’re new to DSP request a demo here.

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