The news: Approximately 17% of all ads delivered through connected TV (CTV) devices like dongles or gaming consoles are playing while televisions are off, costing marketers $1 billion per year in wasted ad spend, according to a report from GroupM and iSpot.
The problem: The study was conducted with 20 million Vizio smart TVs, and found streaming devices sometimes do not receive an “off” signal from the attached HDMI cable when a user shuts off a television.
What this means: The findings are an unwelcome shakeup to an ad industry already in disarray and dealing with the looming era of uncertainty, a shaky digital ad landscape, and the fractured state of TV measurement.
Solutions: Streaming services and TV manufacturers were quick to respond to the news with potential solutions, but because the issue lies with hardware, a meaningful fix could be a long way out.
The big takeaway: The report casts doubt on the effectiveness of several growing advertising spend sectors at a time when the ad industry is already facing tough times and uncertainty about the effectiveness of multiple digital ad channels.