As a small business owner you have tons of advertising options coming at you from every direction. To say it’s overwhelming is an understatement! There are countless platforms and opportunities where you can spend your advertising budget, but there’s a lesser known new kid on the advertising block that you should check out: over-the-top (OTT). While traditional television ads may have been perceived as too expensive or unattainable, their cousin over-the-top ads might just be your best option to get the most bang for your advertising buck.
What is OTT?
OTT stands for over-the-top which is a type of advertising on streaming TV. Any content delivered to viewers over the internet (as opposed to a traditional cable box) is OTT content. So your favorite streaming service like youtube, hulu, or any other non traditional TV service that offers ads would be considered OTT. The biggest advantage of this type of advertising is that advertisers can create personalized, varied marketing messages that you are able to measure in a way that you cannot do with traditional TV advertising. While the advertising content isn’t much different (if at all) than what you’d see while watching traditional television, the specific demographic filtering features is what differentiates it. OTT allows for hyper-target audiences to be reached which is making it more desirable to advertisers to really pinpoint the audience they want. Let’s say you are selling a hot new children’s art toy. Instead of putting your ads on a channel and anyone watching that channel can see it, with OTT you can narrow down your audience to a specific show, a specific account type, specific areas, and even specific habits. This really helps you make sure the people most likely to purchase your product or service are the ones who see your ads, making sure you get the most bang for your buck.
Television commercials are quickly becoming a thing of the past because of over-the-top ads. Regular cable and broadcast TV advertising simply doesn’t allow the precision to target audiences the way OTT advertising does. This is great for advertisers because they can spend their money on OTT ads that will be delivered to viewers using these streaming services. OTT cannot be skipped, closed out, and viewers cannot install any kind of software that blocks these ads. Beyond that, advertisers can take their ads and pick a demographic more specific than the broad demos used for TV advertising such as women 25-54. They can now not only target women between 30-35 with at least one child who owns a home and 2 cars. It’s that specificity that makes OTT stand out among the sea of weaker advertising options.
Since OTT ads are delivered on any device that streams video over the internet, the options are more vast than a television sitting in someone’s home. The net of OTT ads is cast to all phones, laptops, smart TV’s, and even gaming consoles that stream videos over the internet so they are not limited to one television with a cable box. The data that can be drawn from OTT ads is unmatched. The detailed data of ad performance allows the advertiser to really find out whether or not their ad was effective, use that as a tool to optimize future ads, and adjust their strategy going forward.
When taking a look at all of the advertising options out there, OTT is one to strongly consider. Traditional TV advertising is a shot in the dark. You can pick channels or networks but you never really know if you are reaching your target audience, and you have no way to analyze your results accurately. With all of the options and platforms offering OTT, there is sure to be one that will fit your business, reach your target audience, and get your message across.