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Big 2018 Just a Sampling of Connected TV’s Potential

Connected TV advertising is booming, as was covered by my colleague Alan Wolk over on Forbes this week. Independent video supply-side platform Beachfront released new data that showed 1,640-percent growth in CTV ad requests in November 2018 compared to the same time last year.

Jumping up from 1.7 billion CTV ad requests to 29.9 billion from one year to the next is quite the feat, and that’s directly related to audience growth. CTV is growing its audience to impressive levels, and as a result, ads are capitalizing on that increasing-by-the-day number of eyeballs. When looking at the video ecosystem as a whole, CTV must be considered as one of the largest opportunities for content producers and advertisers to not only find consumers, but get them to pay attention, too.

Beachfront measured video completion rates (VCRs) for CTV at over 90 percent across the board in November 2018, but premium apps run higher than 95 percent. So when you hear about the deluge of content providers getting into the ad-supported CTV game for 2019 (AT&T, Disney, Walmart, Costco, Viacom, Quibi), some are happy to jump right in because of figures like that. If you’re running ad-supported CTV programming, those sorts of rates are bound to entice brands to come aboard.

Wolk talked about that in his piece, plus the importance of the largest CTV ad player, Roku, which serves as a bit of an agnostic entrypoint to the entire ecosystem. With content from Hulu, Amazon, Google, Netflix and many more providers, it’s no wonder that Roku handled 87% of CTV ad requests in November 2018.

Given advertising’s increasing role in Roku’s future, these sorts of data points are valuable to note — and likely very much on the mind of potential buyers should Roku sell in the near-term. TV[R]EV’s own Mike Shields posited Facebook is exactly the sort of company that should jump in, allowing Roku to handle the streaming TV ad business that was just recently shut down. Facebook may not have been able to puts its own data to use there. But Roku’s OS (already present for 25% of the country’s smart TVs) is a much different (more mature) story.

Back in August, TruOptik estimated the CTV ad market would hit $8.2 billion in 2018, which made for a 75.5 percent increase over 2017. The numbers are even more staggering as we move forward: an estimated $13.3 billion in 2019 and $20.1 in 2020. Given the growth of long-tail content on CTV as well, you can see how this all equates to a lucrative opportunity for everyone involved.