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Under the Tree for 2020: Mobile, Video & Linear TV

This past year, DMN declared that TV was locked in transition. Instead of a smooth transition from linear to streaming, fragmentation at every form factor and screen size proliferated. Consumer choice won out, even at the cost of consumer convenience. (But wait, several of our experts predict bundling will come back in 2020 to make viewing more convenient.)

For every new emerging breed of mobile app, streaming package or linear TV offering, we can guarantee that a data-backed solution, or many, will be offering better attribution and bidding opportunities. Ideally, this points the way for advertisers to target a more relevant audience.

View our CX predictions HERE. Stay tuned for more presents from the ghosts of marketing tech future through Dec 31.

Mobile wallet pre-installs Mobile wallets pre-installed on smartphones will continue to gain momentum, taking the onus off brands to provide wallet experiences of their own. We saw this trend begin in 2019 with Apple Pay exceeding 30 million users and surpassing Starbucks as the most popular mobile payments app. It was the first time a platform payments app has been in the No. 1 position. This opportunity for brands is huge, as they can use Apple Wallet or Google Pay as marketing platforms — not just for transactions, but for notifying customers about coupons about to expire or new loyalty rewards they’ve received, or dozens of other innovative use cases. What’s more, the U.S. represents a vast area of growth for mobile wallet marketers, as 72 percent of mobile wallet users are either in high or medium-income brackets.

Mike Herrick, SVP technology, Airship


Music apps turn into lifestyle apps They will go broader by extending the experience to new contexts – such as the car, the movie theater or the mall – and deeper by offering tailored content, products and services based on their users’ stated preferences – music tastes will lead to recommendations for podcasts, fashion items or wellness services.

Laetitia Gazel Anthoine, CEO and founder, HEROW


Advanced bidding and monetization According to our latest research, massive growth in mobile ad spend can be attributed to the amount of time users are spending on their mobile devices (vs. desktop) and the emergence of new formats like video. These changes have led to an evolution in programmatic buying in both developed and emerging global markets. Mobile ad platform spending continued to grow aggressively in Q3, rising 28 percent over last quarter, while desktop ad platform spending declined slightly over the same period. For 2020 and beyond, brands should expect to see marked improvements in quality and transparency of in-app media environments as well as the evolution of KPIs and benchmarks, enabling marketers to reach target audiences at scale, across platforms, in a brand safe manner. Additionally, header bidding technology will see more investment from app developers looking to take advantage of the advancements in media monetization already broadly adopted by the web publishers.

Paulina Klimenko, SVP, Corporate Development and GM, Mobile at PubMatic

OTT bundling Media companies will experiment with different OTT business models. 2020 will see more experimentation with bundling and economic models, to create options for viewers to choose the “size” that is right for them.

Devra Prywes, chief product officer, Applicaster


Emerging branded content The proliferation and popularization of streaming will reduce the effectiveness of the traditional 30-second ad, and we’ll see more opportunities for branded content to appear in traditionally non-ad supported places. I think 2020 will be another year of big bets by companies with absurdly deep pockets, but look out another year or two and it seems likely there will have to be a shake out. T-Mobile offers Netflix when you switch, Verizon offers Disney+ – more of these combo packages are inevitable, which brings us back to the bundles we were trying to get away from.

Steve Grimes, chief digital officer, AKA NYC


Local news and sports apps In 2020, we’ll see a continued effort from local media companies to develop and roll out new products for their existing sales force to sell. Consumers love free local content, and in order to stay engaged and competitive in the face of increasing pressure from the likes of Google, Facebook, and even Amazon, local media companies should consider roll out local focused OTT apps for their unique content especially around news and sports. The future of local advertising is digital and programmatic. Local advertisers must adapt and accelerate their transition from traditional media to OTT and CTV advertising. In order to meet this demand, local advertisers will have to increase their use of OTT and leverage their local audience first party data to discover shifting local audiences as well as supplement their linear campaigns.

Aman Sareen, CEO, ZypMedia


Ad-supported Netflix? With new entrants to the streaming wars, Netflix will survive 2020 but it won’t be the same company it was when it launched in 2007. Netflix will need to offer a cheaper, ad-supported tier. While Netflix has cause for concern, free OTT services will not only survive, they will thrive as consumers look to supplement pay connected TV with free options.

— Andre Swanston, CEO and founder, Tru Optik


Short-form video resurgence Short-form video was back in the spotlight in 2019 with TikTok’s popularity and, of course, ever-shrinking attention spans. The format—whether it’s five, six or 10 seconds—is going to continue emerging in both advertising and marketing across channels, including news sites, streaming platforms and professional communities. And it’s not just for consumer efforts — business-to-business (B2B) brands need to figure out how to use these short-form clips too. Whether it’s a consumer or B2B effort, the shorter the message, the more memorable it needs to be. Making a viewer smile or tugging at their heartstrings isn’t new, but now you must get their attention (and establish ad recall) in just a few seconds.

Penry Price, vice president, marketing solutions, LinkedIn

Data-driven TV tidal wave In 2008, Google tried to revolutionize TV ad buying with the launch of AdSense for TV. This means that for over a decade, there has been a slow and inexorable march toward a data-driven future. But even only 12 months ago, there remained a consensus that most planning and buying operated behind closed doors, hidden away from the programmatic and data-driven disruptors. 2019 saw those walls come crashing down and 2020 will see a tidal wave of change. Accelerated cord-cutting, proliferation of streaming services, innovation in advanced advertising by incumbent networks and unprecedented levels of content investment are creating more disruption than the onset of the post-network era in the 1980s. And perhaps most impactful of all, in 2020, half of all TV content will be viewed on mobile platforms. All of this has created a fertile market for evolution in TV advertising, driven by a proliferation in data making TV more addressable than ever. This pushed US marketers to spend $7 billion on connected TV ad spending in 2019, which is expected to jump to nearly $9 billion in 2020. But in a market of $70 billion, there is plenty of headroom for growth.

Rob Jonas, CRO, Factual


SVOD & AVOD More than 80 percent of marketers see digital video becoming a greater chunk of their marketing mix as consumer adoption continues to shift there. But the key question is what type of video formats will ultimately dominate the market? Video will continue to evolve with an all-out battle between subscription video on demand (SVOD) and ad-based video on demand (AVOD) business models, with some major growth in rewarded and user-initiated video formats, as well. We will also see a greater convergence of traditional (think long form, TV) and emerging (more short form, largely mobile and OTT) formats. These will create more and more valuable opportunities for advertisers, publishers and consumers to engage. Interestingly, as more SVOD providers launch services for a flat rate per month, consumers are becoming more conservative about the services they sign up for. SVOD players will need true content differentiation to carve out market share. Disney+, with everything from Iron Man to Disney classics and exclusive originals, is a good example of a winning combination.

Iván Markman, chief business officer, Verizon Media


Improved visibility for local broadcasters ATSC 3.0 will begin to be rolled out in 2020, and the only people who care will be local broadcasters who are pinning their hopes on it. However, the improved visibility into who is viewing their broadcasts may introduce more issues rather than solve the problem of declining viewership, as advertisers realize the linear audiences are not the ones they are seeking.

— Brian McNeill, COO and co-founder, Stringr


New digital-based metrics With OTT/CTV growing rapidly, the lines between traditional and digital blur, and thus I expect we will see advertisers looking to new ways of measuring TV ad effectiveness in 2020. Traditional TV advertisers will likely ditch traditional metrics like Gross Rating Points (GRPs) for more advanced attribution metrics that their digital advertising counterparts have grown accustomed to, such as impressions, foot traffic, and purchase conversions. The reason for this shift is that advertisers who are used to digital performance metrics will not want to revert back to demographic-based GRPs. Local TV stations have already made a step away from GRPs by selling TV ads based on impressions delivered, and attribution and performance-based metrics will be a fast follow.

Frost Prioleau, Co-founder and CEO, Simpli.fi 

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