More and more advertisers are running commercials in the streaming television environment known as OTT (Over The Top) and/or CTV (Connected TV). But most of them are big national brands like GMC, Pampers and L’Oreal. Where are the local dentists and restaurants? Where are the local car dealerships, day care providers, pet stores and boutiques? Why aren’t local SMBs taking advantage of OTT/CTV?
Here are 4 reasons:
1. Local SMBs don’t realize the Connected TV opportunity via OTT.
Millions of cord cutters, cord shavers and cord nevers are watching content via OTT (Over The Top TV). And while ad-free Netflix may reign supreme, 73% of adults who watch streaming video also consume ad-supported programming. Business owners who haven’t cut back on their own cable subscriptions or shifted their viewing habits may not be aware of the size of this opportunity.
2. Local SMBs don’t know how to buy commercials on Connected TV.
Even if Joe of Joe’s BBQ was an avid watcher of PLUTO TV and wanted to run commercials during a Hell’s Kitchen marathon, he probably wouldn’t know where to begin. But that’s going to change soon because OTT inventory is now being sold via ad exchanges (just like display advertising). Local sellers of digital advertising are flooding onto the scene and they’ll be able to help Joe and other local SMB owners take advantage of this opportunity.
3. Many local SMBs don’t have video assets (TV commercials).
While a lot of SMBs would love to have their very own commercial, advertising on television hasn’t fit in many of their budgets. Production costs and airtime can be expensive when compared to other traditional and digital media. For that reason, SMBs don’t have pre-produced commercials available to take advantage of the streaming TV opportunity. But thanks to the popularity of online video ads (I’m talking about pre-roll videos on sites like YouTube and Food Network), there are a lot of local video production companies that can create high quality content at an affordable rate. Local students are often willing to work cheap so they can add projects to their resumes. There are even ready-made optionsavailable. Today, SMBs can get a decent 15 or 30 second commercial built for an affordable price.
4. SMBs don’t realize how well they can target users on Connected TV.
Until recently, advertisers who have migrated to streaming television have done so in an attempt to “follow the eyeballs.” They understand the migration of viewers from cable and broadcast to OTT and they want to make sure they are still reaching their audience. What they may not realize is just how good the targeting has gotten. The ability to target OTT viewers based on their physical address, local geo, demographic profiles and even online behavior now exists. Imagine being able to deliver an ad to the streaming TV device in someone’s home because they visited the competition or did online research for certain keywords that are relevant to the advertiser! That is the opportunity that is emerging in 2019.
Sure, the big national brands have traditionally been the early adopters of ad tech. They’ve tested the space and paved the way. Now is the time for local SMBs to get in on the action. Personally, I look forward to sitting down in front of my Roku and being presented with commercials that are meaningful and significant to me, because if I have to see one more commercial for Rogaine, I’m going to pull out my hair. Oh wait. Too late!