What’s Next For TV Advertising?

If you’ve been watching less and less TV these days, you’re not alone. Blame it on the countless other forms of entertainment readily available to us, from social networking and games to YouTube and web videos. As people shift to other screens for entertainment and information, one big question comes to mind: are we really entering the post-TV era?

The numbers seem to indicate otherwise. In the UK, total television viewing hours has been increasing 6% year on year. To put it in an online perspective, the total time the UK spent on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter was just half of the total viewing time for TV.

Advertising on TV is another thing though. Forrester forecasts that online ad spending will overtake television advertising by 2016. It’s not happening any time soon, but advertisers are slowly trying out other advertising avenues like social and mobile. Let’s look at a few ways this will play out:

  • Ads will begin to target and engage viewers more and more. With televisions becoming smarter and getting access to the web, direct interaction with shows will become the norm. IPTV will be the culmination of this, where viewers and networks will finally be able to truly interact with each other.
  • Use of mobile marketing for TV will grow. A study by Yahoo revealed that 86% of mobile internet users use their devices while watching TV. Beyond SMS, apps like GetGlue and IntoNow are letting viewers “check-in” to shows that they are watching. So while people aren’t as mindful of their TV, advertisers can still push ads through mobile.
  • Mobile TV will be the new TV. Viewing TV on the smallest screen will soon be a reality with the switch over to digital for many countries. Advertising in this medium will be different though, something the networks should remember well.
  • Embedded ads will be more popular. The best way to get a message across is to push it to as many screens as possible. But as the video is spread to different sites, regular advertising will have a difficult time following the content, which where product placements, sponsored videos and embedded ads come in.
So not the end of TV advertising, not by a long way, but there will be a new new way of doing it. Contextually aware advertising will arrive, it will be less and less common for viewers to sit on a sofa soaking up the adverts being pushed at them on broadcast channels,  IPTV will find a purpose, and the word ‘mobile’ won’t be far from anyone’s lips.

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