ʪƵ Connect Singapore

ʪƵ Connect Singapore: Streaming TV’s New Era and Beyond

ʪƵ Team

February 13, 2024 | 6 min read

As digital usage continues to surge, the omnichannel consumer journey is evolving. Ad-supported streaming continues to establish itself as an integral part of the TV landscape. ʪƵ’s research, “Streaming TV’s New Era,” reveals that 71% of TV viewers in Southeast Asia now watch ad-supported services, and streaming audiences are on par with traditional TV viewers. 

Launching this new research at the ʪƵ Connect event in Singapore, industry leaders gathered to discuss how these trends are shaping the advertising landscape across Southeast Asia.

Embracing TV’s Transformation: An Ad-supported Future

Ad-supported streaming in Southeast Asia has reached critical mass, with 71% of TV viewers embracing it. Agencies and brands are increasingly aware of this growth, and more publishers see the need to offer an ad-supported tier.

“We see more time going into streaming online, but also an expansion of content available on digital TV,”  said Tommy Sullivan, CTO at Vidio. ”It’s a unique time. Advertising is important for OTT to survive. Having advertising in our toolbox and being able to subsidize subscription components is necessary.”

For agencies, this also means taking clients on a TV transformation journey to embrace new opportunities on the big screen and tailoring discussions to clients’ existing strategies.

“For some, TV may not be part of the plan, requiring a conversation on CTV opportunities,” explained Alex Lowes, VP of client growth, GroupM Nexus. “Others may lean heavily on traditional TV, focusing more on navigating the transition within the space.”

Nic Jones, APAC head of media planning at EssenceMediacom, highlighted that brands have embraced video streaming in their media strategies driven by the scaled opportunity and the benefit of addressability. 

“We get lots of questions on incremental reach over walled gardens and how to reach audiences,” said Jones. “The benefit of addressability on streaming means we can go after specific geos focusing on high-value locations with creative messaging. This offers unique points of differentiation to drive scale.” He also emphasized the ability to get the best of both worlds with streaming TV but noted that demand is growing slower than opportunity, and education plays a big role in changing that.

“Ultimately, clients are going on a transformation journey,” said Lowes. “They know linear audiences are declining, and inventory is increasing at pace in the CTV market.”

Unlocking New Addressable Audiences

With the promise of addressable data, more opportunities are available for brands to tap into. ʪƵ’s research revealed that more than 70% of streaming ad viewers were comfortable sharing their interests or demographic data if it meant more relevant ads. This brings good news to advertisers and publishers who want to create a more personalized user ad experience.

EssenceMediacom’s Jones highlighted that retail data will be key for CPG brands, noting that broad targeting for niche categories could result in wastage. “Brands such as pet nutrition want to target pet owners by ingesting data and creating relevant audience segments based on pet food purchase history,” he said. “For luxury travel clients, this means targeting by income level.”

Additionally, CTV reach is expected to grow, reaching more audiences. “The affordability of devices drives a lot of opportunities,” added Jones. “CTV is cheaper; previously considered emerging markets could become Smart TV-first markets.”

While streaming’s mobile and TV experiences are both highly ranked, GroupM Nexus’s Lowes highlights CTV’s unique ability to engage the whole household and expand the addressable audience. 

The addressable nature of CTV also facilitates bespoke market activation. At GroupM Nexus, location audience targeting has enabled a telecom brand in Malaysia to activate its audiences across prime locations where 5G is available.

“5G is not available everywhere, and activating that on broadcast will deliver a lot of wastage,” said Lowes. “By activating their audiences in core locations where 5G is available, results were great with high recognition.” 

“There’s also more opportunity to do things creatively with addressability on the big screen, such as QR codes on the end frame to drive engagement,” added Jones.

Beyond Transactions: Crafting the Brand-Consumer Experience

When it comes to capturing audience attention on streaming services, quality content, and great user ad experience are key factors. ʪƵ’s research showed that 92% of ad-supported streaming viewers are engaged when consuming content, while 62% of social media users say the user-generated videos don’t hold their attention for long. 

Anson Tan, country head of Viu Singapore, highlighted the pivotal role of audience emotional connection with their favorite dramas and soundtracks within streaming environments, offering a unique opportunity to reach lean-forward audiences in a premium environment. 

“Content is the core focus of our business, and it is key to answering local content consumption needs,” Tan said. “On the platform side, we continue to evolve and offer differentiated targeting and new ad solutions.” 

GroupM Nexus’s Lowes emphasized, “If we talk about TV transformation to clients, premium content and viewing experience has to be the same.” 

“Impressions and inventories available are overwhelming; what’s important is ensuring we are running high-quality experience and delivering that brand experience as opposed to just number of impressions,” said Vidio’s Sullivan. “It’s about connecting brands with context in the content, making it less invasive and more fun and entertaining in terms of format,” he added.

Reshaping Programmatic View – Driving Premium Scale 

Programmatic delivers the scale and targeting that agencies and brands need while expanding publisher reach. However, more work is required to change the legacy programmatic mindset. 

“Programmatic allows brands and advertisers to execute their plan with scale and precision,”  said Viu’s Tan. “However, we need to educate brands that programmatic does not mean cheap. It can be premium because the audience is engaged during prime times.”

“Programmatic adds the quality, not quantity, where it’s not possible through traditional advertising,” added Vidio’s Sullivan, emphasizing that audiences go through a purchase journey where ads across different touchpoints play a role in the final purchase.

“Programmatic scale is there, but it comes down to the certainty of clients investing in it,” said EssenceMediacom’s Jones. However, he noted that metrics largely drive this. “More work needs to be done to prove the adequacy of programmatic beyond an impression such as generating sales and brand perception,” he added.

GroupM Nexus’s Lowes noted that demand for CTV inventory is expected to grow as linear audiences decline. “We’re going to need more. This also means working hand in glove with broadcasters who may not have programmatic inventory to talk to them on what that would mean for their business.”

With the rise of programmatic, data activation, and the potential of streaming services, advertisers are in an exciting phase to seize new opportunities to create engaging ad experiences for consumers and drive results in the premium streaming space. 

Download ʪƵ’s Streaming Report to find out more. 

Tags: Buyer, Streaming

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