The average connected TV advertising campaign reaches just 13% of available CTV homes in the U.S., according to the results of a research study from CTV ad-tech platform Innovid in partnership with the Association of National Advertisers (ANA). The study, as reported by MediaPost, was conducted from January to April and focused on CTV ad campaigns from 20 brands including General Motors, Anheuser-Busch, Walgreens, Honda, Colgate, General Mills and MasterCard, totaling $35 million in media spending with 1.7 billion impressions on 169 publishers and more than 25 connected TV devices.
“Measurement is one of the biggest challenges facing marketers these days,” ANA Group Executive VP Bill Duggan says. “The standardization of CTV advertising measurement is still in its earlier stages, and this study found that we’ve only uncovered the tip of the iceberg of what is possible in CTV.”
CTV, powered by smart TVs with a built-in internet connection and media platform allowing for streaming video services such as Hulu and more targeted advertising, is projected to reach four-fifths of U.S homes in 2021, according to eMarketer. ANA-Innovid's study recommends upwards of 100 million ad impressions in order to reach 40% of the U.S.'s CTV homes.
The study also reports an average publisher duplication rate of 32% due to campaigns using a large number of inventory partners to achieve scale, resulting in greater levels of overlap, although these campaigns also tend to reach a larger percentage of CTV homes. Additionally, the 20 campaigns' average CPM (cost per thousand viewers) of $23 falls between that of prime time ads on broadcast and cable, which deliver a $36 and $19 CPM respectively, according to eMarketer. While ANA-Innovid reports an average cost per unique reach for CTV of $123, it also notes that by enabling enhanced first- and third-party audience targeting, granular reach and frequency measurement at the household level, “every dollar spent on CTV works harder.”
In its defense, the study states that CTV's “frequency problem [is] highly exaggerated” and that the frequency of ads seen by viewers is lower than generally believed, with 85% of CTV homes exposed to an ad once or twice, while 14% were exposed three to nine times. “There’s a misconception that there’s not enough reach in CTV, however our study saw we’ve just scratched the surface of the potential reach for this channel,” Innovid General Manager of Measurement and Analytics Jessica Hogue says. “To date, it’s been challenging for marketers to effectively optimize CTV campaigns due to a complex ecosystem of disparate device and app options per household.”