It’s no secret that television and digital video consumption has changed considerably over the past few years. As audiences move from TV sets to connected televisions (CTVs), brands look for new ways to remain relevant in this shifting environment.
Connected TV platforms strive to create brand-safe environments where advertisers can run their campaigns without worrying about being associated with controversial content. Still, it’s not as easy as it sounds.
Here’s what business owners need to know about how connected TV platforms tackle the issue of brand safety while staying flexible enough to cater to all stakeholders’ needs.
What Is Brand Safety?
For business owners, brand safety guarantees that their ads will not appear alongside offensive or controversial content. This has been a growing concern in recent years as more and more people consume media on digital platforms.
However, connected TV platforms are beginning to tackle this issue head-on. For example, brands can now use CTV’s audience targeting tools to ensure their ads only show up during shows with an appropriate audience rating.
In addition, CTV offers brand safety guidelines for partners and advertisers looking for greater assurances about where their advertisements will be seen.
The Problem with Traditional Digital Media Platforms (i.e., Google, Facebook)
Business owners are becoming increasingly aware of the risks associated with advertising on traditional digital media platforms. For example, these platforms have been known to display ads next to offensive or inappropriate content, which can reflect poorly on the advertiser.
Additionally, these platforms are often opaque about where and how ads are being served, making it difficult for advertisers to ensure their ads appear in a safe and appropriate environment.
CTV platforms work hard to ensure that all ads are served appropriately by utilizing strict guidelines such as:
- Prohibiting advertisements from airing near sensitive material.
- Age-gating certain channels during certain hours of programming.
- Implementing technology such as Nielsen’s Vantage TM3 can detect any ad that may be unsuitable for viewers.
With these precautions in place, advertisers can rest assured knowing that their brand is not at risk when partnering with CTV platforms.
Brands Moving Towards Connected Television Advertising on Smart TVs
Recently, we’ve seen a shift in how people consume media. Traditional television is no longer the only option – now, multiple OTT and CTV devices allow viewers to watch what they want when they want.
This presents a challenge for brands who want to advertise on these platforms. How can they be sure their target audience will see their ads? And more importantly, how can they be sure their ads will be safe from being associated with inappropriate content?
The first thing advertisers need to do is find out where the right place is for them to advertise. The most popular platform currently is YouTube, and it’s not just because it’s one of the most well-known sites online but also because Google has developed algorithms that filter out offensive content and provide brand safety protection.
Many other advertising opportunities are available on connected TVs, such as Hulu Live TV or Sling TV – all networks that use technology that filters out offensive content and provides brand safety protection.
What Can Brands Do to Protect Themselves from Brand Safety Issues?
Most brands have not yet adopted this philosophy and still insist on uploading content directly to social media platforms, where the risk of brand safety is much higher. As a result, many major corporations are pulling their ads from YouTube after finding that their advertisements ran in front of extremist or other objectionable videos.
There is no way for companies to control what happens on social media, so they need to make sure they’re protecting themselves by not putting themselves in these positions in the first place.
Ad fraud is a big problem for business owners, especially in digital advertising. But CTV platforms are working hard to fight back against ad fraud. Here are four ways they’re doing it:
- By increasing transparency and providing more data to advertisers.
- By partnering with anti-fraud companies.
- By investing in new technology.
- By educating advertisers on best practices. For example, some brands will decide not to advertise during certain times, like post-midnight.
Business owners can also use brand safety tools from their CTV platform provider to gain additional insights into program or content information for a premium fee.
Platforms have invested significant time and resources in understanding what works for businesses to ensure success and reduce risk.
The first step is finding the right channel partner who has successfully built an ecosystem around CTV advertising by optimizing programming, designating dedicated airtime for ads, and using proprietary analytics to assess risk factors.
If a channel partner doesn’t take steps towards creating this environment, then a business owner should consider whether they want their brand associated with that kind of low-quality viewership.