How CTV is Changing CPG Omnichannel Marketing Activation

By Jessica Lan, Executive Director, Solutions at Catalina

When I started my career in brand management, TV was a mystical, magical media vehicle that I had very little control over. I dumped days and weeks into understanding which tactics we needed to revive our brand and obsessing over the minute details of designing 360-degree messaging.

Then, we spent millions of dollars on TV shows targeting by demographic, hoping the right consumers were watching. At year-end, we were handed a report that determined our fate for the next year. Would we keep our biggest awareness vehicle and most reliable way of communicating our brand’s benefit to consumers? Or had we guessed wrong, and face getting our budgets slashed?

Messy targeting scenarios like these are why 2022 is expected to be a boom year for Connected TV (CTV). Its rapid adoption is changing the face of omnichannel activation with marketers poised to invest record dollars into the channel. According to eMarketer’s CTV Advertising report, US CTV upfront spending is expected to reach $6 billion in 2022, with overall CTV advertising estimated at $19.1 billion.

Yahoo!’s Chief Business Officer Ivan Markman explains that when CTV makes up a third of the Upfront spend, “it’s no longer experimental – it’s a mainstay. At the same time, the important task of eliminating overlap and excess household frequency will require advertisers to increase the sophistication of their CTV buys.”

Even if you’re already using CTV in your upfront TV plans, is it working as hard for you as it could? Today, most CTV is purchased to stop the leaky bucket of Gross Rating Points (GRP) and Target Rating Points (TRP). We see a lot of agencies mimicking their linear TV buy on CTV, which is not the precision play it could be. Now, through multichannel activation, including streaming on people’s mega-TVs in their home, the biggest budgets can and should be better coordinated to be more efficient. CTV requires marketers think about activation differently:

  1. Selectively deploy media: Like other digital vehicles, you can choose who you reach with CTV and over-the-top (OTT) TV and use your dollars to target your most desired shoppers with the right message. You no longer need to use psychographic targeting and best guesses with “spray and pray” media buys for awareness. Instead, entice competitive buyers or switchers with new varieties you know will win them over or give current buyers more reasons to purchase your product. Regardless of your objective, you can be confident you’re talking to the right households instead of guessing via flawed viewership demographics.

  2. Control reach and frequency at the household (HH) level: A recent visit to my mom’s house helps illustrate why it’s important to be able to track HH-level matching across multiple devices. She is infatuated with a Taiwanese American pop star who’s in the middle of messy divorce and has spent a great deal of time browsing on the internet about it. Because I’d connected to her Wi-Fi while visiting, now I’m getting fed content and ads related to something very important to her that I couldn’t care less about.

    Wasted ad impressions like these happen because most technology maps to a device not a person’s household. That’s the strength of the Catalina’s partnership with Cadent. We’ve integrated our Shopper ID Graph, which covers 107 million US households, with Cadent’s audience graph technology that resolves multiple TV devices back to a household with minimal drop-off and maximum reach. Now, advertisers can better understand shopper behaviors and household-level viewing habits to optimize media spend.

  3. Drive shoppers along the path to purchase: Marketing automation solutions -- like retargeting and suppression -- work together to break down channel silos. Brands can operate in one ecosystem of impressions and optimize downstream media based on consumer interactions.

    For example, as a new frozen pizza brand entered the category, it was looking for the most efficient way to drive awareness, educate consumers, and incentivize trial amongst only its most valuable targets. They wanted to use TV but had a modest budget. Catalina’s real-time, purchase-based targeting and sequential media activation ensured that relevant consumers were exposed to awareness-building ads first. Only after viewing the ad three times were they served the trial offer. If a viewer purchased the product, then the trial offer was suppressed, generating significant savings on both media and redemption costs. With this approach, the brand recruited new users and gained back share while improving its Return on Investment (ROI) from shoppers who converted before receiving the offer.

  4. Take advantage of real-time measurement and optimization: Unlike linear TV, CTV gives brands more ways to measure and optimize based on specific objectives. Idahoan Foods, for example, used multi-touch attribution (MTA) on its CTV campaign to uncover which creative messaging worked best for its target audiences as well as which audience responded with the most product purchases to its advertising. With relatively low dollar commitment levels, they partnered with Catalina to optimize creative and audiences in real time.

    The brand found that one specific target required 42% fewer impressions than the lowest performing target, and Catalina shifted impressions toward the better performing target in real time after being live for only 4 weeks. Ultimately, the campaign attracted 87K new buyers and posted a $0.56 incremental Return of Ad Spend (ROAS).

As supply chain issues and labor shortages continue this year, a few of the things brands can control are precision-targeting of their media and the ability to optimize efficiently. Adding CTV into Responsive Marketing tools provides targeted top-of-funnel activity to a brand’s most important consumers. Brands can reach the right shoppers and push them toward conversion in a coordinated way instead of simply hoping the tactics all come together. If only I had Responsive Marketing tools when I was in brand management, I’d have fewer gray hairs than I do today and the patience to tolerate yet one more story about pop star Wang Leehom’s rocky love life.

Learn more about how Catalina’s advanced TV solutions can help you reach your most valuable shoppers and measure omnichannel campaign impact.

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