Last week in New York City, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) hosted the Digital Content NewFronts. Like the traditional UpFronts for TV, the event featured a series of presentations by major content companies to influence advertisers to invest in digital. With digital video consumption on the rise, the online advertising landscape is also rapidly changing to deliver relevant content across multiple screens.
At the NewFronts, IAB and market research institute GFK revealed their 2014 Original Digital Video Study, highlighting statistics about consumer viewing behavior in comparison to 2013. According to the study, 52 million American adults watched original digital video each month, a 15 percent increase from 45 million per month last year. The report also found 46 percent of the people surveyed viewed content on smartphones and 41 percent viewed it on tablets, double of those a year ago. 41 percent of those interviewed cited viewing flexibility as the main reason for watching digital content instead of traditional TV, which explains the rapid transition.
As a result, online video advertising has grown into a multibillion-dollar industry. Although television ad spend still dominates, the gap between TV and online ad spend is getting smaller, and IAB projects that advertisers planned to spend more in digital advertising in 2014 than they did in 2012. In addition, industry leaders discussed how video can deliver personalized experiences for individual consumers. New advertising technologies are being refined and ensuring that consumers receive the most relevant ads at the right time.
Publishers and platform providers are giving advertisers more options when it comes to targeting consumers with relevant ads. YouTube rolled out the Google Preferred advertising platform that allows advertisers to deliver pre-rolls during the top 5 percent of the most popular video content. Time Inc. and Yahoo announce that they are producing scripted long form shows at the NewFronts this year. This comes on the heels of an eMarketer study, which revealed that digital video ads that are played during long-form videos (20 minutes or more) had a 92 percent completion rate.
The future is looking bright for digital video. As online video is on track to eclipse $5 billion in 2014 ad spends, now is the time for marketers to consider how to deliver the most engaging, relevant video content to an increasingly digital audience.