Connected TV Advertising

Connected TV Advertising

Almost Ready for Primetime

Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Although connected TV advertising likely makes up a small, single-digit portion of overall video ad spending, it is expected to grow in the coming years as audiences continue to embrace digital streaming on their living room screens. The dynamics of connected TV advertising are challenging given the fragmentation among platforms, relatively small scale and a lack of standardization in data gathering and reporting, but the popularity of the medium makes it a tantalizing ad opportunity.

How many US connected TV users are there, and what is the forecast for 2022?

In 2018, our forecast puts the number of connected TV users at 182.6 million, or 55.5% of the US population. In 2022, the number of connected TV users will rise to 204.1 million, which will represent 60.1% of the population.

What’s the difference between connected TV and OTT?

The two terms are often used interchangeably in the industry. We define OTT as video that’s delivered independently of a traditional pay TV service, irrespective of device. Connected TV refers specifically to video watched on a TV with internet connectivity. By these definitions, connected TV is a subset of OTT. Nevertheless, industry insiders and data providers often use the term OTT to refer to services that are geared primarily toward connected TV viewing, such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and Sling TV.

How can a marketer buy a connected TV campaign?

A media buyer considering connected TV has the option of buying from sources such as streaming device manufacturers, smart TV makers, content aggregators, programmatic ad firms and broadcast networks that allow advertisers to extend traditional TV buys into the digital space. This means the inventory is spread out in a way that makes it hard for any single channel, or provider, to deliver the kind of scale that advertisers are accustomed to with linear TV. The industry is currently working through a host of technical and business challenges that have stood in the way of a flourishing ad business on connected TV.

WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report examines the connected TV space through the lens of advertising opportunities and challenges.

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Paul Verna


Annalise Clayton
Senior Researcher
Sean Creamer
Lauren Fisher
Principal Analyst