Television

Advertisers, Media Companies, and Audience Suppression: The Perfect Trio

March 15, 2021  |   Tara Franceschini

What is the newest and most effective cross-screen advertising trend? It’s audience suppression, and TV marketers are using it to more effectively manage their cross-screen media portfolio. So, what is this approach and where did it come from?

Advertisers know that connected TV is on the rise and that they need to activate their data to have a successful Upfront strategy. The question lies on how to approach those investments. What we’ve been hearing is that advertisers want to keep their dollars within the traditional media companies and portfolios they already work in. Alternatively, advertisers can go 100% programmatic for CTV, but lose out on the “buying in bulk” benefits of the Upfronts. Either way, to be successful, advertisers must properly allocate budgets cross-screen, and especially into CTV.  

How does audience suppression fit into all of this? 

We’ve seen the urgency and we are advocating for marketers to find a cross-screen measurement partner. Every day without knowing their cross-screen reach and frequency is another day of missed critical information about how a brand’s ads are delivered into households. If advertisers know this information, they can determine how many times an audience needs to see an ad and eliminate waste, while also cross-referencing the data with CPMs to optimize for ROI.

Our research has shown that 75% or more of an advertiser’s impressions are going to less than 25% of the households in the United States. If you only check the box in CTV/OTT with a programmatic TV overlay, you are probably piling on even more impressions to those already heavy linear homes. 

Once the saturation point is determined, we urge advertisers to use custom audiences to target households underserved and suppress those already seeing too many ads, which are typically from heavy linear-viewing households. Having this ability enables advertisers to accurately extend their audiences and reach light linear viewing homes through CTV buys—increasing ROI and making their spend literally reach farther. 

Our advice is that you should be exploring this less-than-traditional strategy—if you aren’t already—as you plan for the Upfronts and look to apply more data into your plans. It could be the solution you’ve been looking for when trying to balance the precision of targeting and the necessities of broad reach.

What does this mean for the TV marketplace?

The 2021/22 Upfront season will see the use of data more than ever. TV programmers should expect an increase in advertisers asking about activating first- and third-party data into their CTV/OTT plans. By delivering on these asks, media owners will be further proving the value of cross-screen TV measurement and activation across their properties. It’s a win-win-win scenario where advertisers are making the smartest buying decisions, media publishers are better utilizing their cross-screen impressions and increasing yield, and consumers will have better experiences by not being bombarded with the same ads over and over. 

Looking for ways to incorporate audience suppression into your pre-Upfronts planning as an advertiser or media owner? Get in touch with us at info@liveramp.com