Addressable targeting for linear TV and more precise targeting for streaming has long been seen as the future of converged TV advertising. But many brands, especially big ones, don’t see much financial advantage in this type of audience segmentation.
Their goal with television is to reach as many people as possible, and their audience is broad. Often, instead of selling a specific product, their TV ads are selling a brand image, designed to create a positive image in the mind of the consumer.
At the same time, their audiences are not monolithic, with significant regional and demographic differences, creating a compelling argument for some degree of diversity in their messaging.
The tension between the need for scale and the need for better targeting is real, and the ability to easily create more personalized versions of events may be just the solution the industry is looking for.
For most brands, the biggest issue with TV and pay-video is cost.
The higher CPMs associated with trying to reach multiple audiences with targeted buying can easily drive the cost of buying to a point where it no longer makes sense.
Likewise, shooting different creative executions to target all of a brand’s different potential audiences is even more costly, as production and agency costs skyrocket.
These high costs stand in stark contrast to digital display advertising, where all purchases are targeted and personalized creative variations are easy to create and often very cost-effective.
So how does converged TV compete?
The solution was to utilize a software-based solution to create alternative versions of the commercial without (a) adding additional production costs beyond budget, (b) altering the inherent message of the (international) country branding campaign, and (c) forcing brands to Waiver of broad nationwide buying availability.
These solutions can be as simple as inserting different still frames at the beginning, middle or end of the scene, or they can go further – current software solutions such as Semitic Allows you to insert actual video frames in your creative and deliver them dynamically to specific audiences in wider media buys via streaming, CTV and digital video.
It’s as easy as creating your flagship ad, then using the technology to create iterations of that ad at very little additional cost. It’s been used in digital advertising for years, but it’s just starting to roll out on a large scale in converged TV.
Brands that know in advance that they want a different version of the ad can actually shoot additional footage during principal photography. For other brands, those that don’t have the budget to shoot multiple versions or are making decisions about existing campaigns, the software is now sophisticated enough to take still frames and video clips that a brand already has and turn them into something that can cut into the original point to create segments of regional or population change.
Brands can then test these releases using CTV’s superior data capabilities across a range of performance metrics to see which ones perform best – everything from checking if an exposure to an ad leads to a website visit, to seeing if viewers are simply watching an ad included to the end.
This knowledge can then be used to iterate on other versions of that ad, doubling down on the variants that seem to be most successful.
As mentioned earlier, creative versioning can be especially beneficial for brands with large but diverse audiences. Take cell phone providers, for example. Everyone needs a mobile phone, but the reasons why they want one can vary widely, and today’s consumers expect brands to meet their specific needs.
With creative versioning, the brand can continue to run the big-budget branding campaigns they’ve been running while adding hashtags for each specific audience. This gives them the best of both worlds — targeted creative without paying for multiple unique audience segments or multiple unique creative units.
There is another party that also benefits from creative versioning: advertising agencies. Creative effectiveness and impact have long been proven to be the greatest drivers of success – the sights, sounds and movements of television create an emotional connection with viewers that digital display advertising cannot replicate.
With dynamic creative versioning technology, the agency still plays a major role in designing concepts, developing ideas and producing original campaigns. The technology is just to allow them to create multiple variations of the campaign easily and efficiently. It’s not AI, it doesn’t initiate activities on its own. It’s just looking for a way to take existing assets and repurpose them in a way that allows for multiple variations of the same site.
This will ultimately make streaming TV a more effective tool for advertisers by delivering more relevant commercials that resonate better with consumers. So a win.