TV screen with ads

Maximizing the impact of the Smart TV Home Screen

Chris Signore, Head of Revenue - AdServing

October 25, 2023 | 4 min read

A recent study from Strategy Analytics found that of all households worldwide will own a smart TV by 2026. In the US alone this stat has already surpassed with an array of streaming services available to keep consumers engaged and searching for more TV shows and movies to watch.

With the continued adoption of smart TVs, there are opportunities for OEMs and streaming services to carve out new points of interaction throughout the viewer experience. The TV home screen is the first thing users see, similar to the homepage of the internet, which offers the opportunity for streaming services – including OEMs – to control the user experience, from serving ads to improving content discovery.

The Homepage of the Living Room

The home screen is often made up of a “hero” or a large image in a grid of “tiles” that includes apps, services and often suggested content. It acts as the jumping off point for content consumption. As a result, the smart TV home screen has become a key tool to improve user engagement – increasing the frequency and length of streaming sessions – to increase average revenue per user.

is a native ad format used by some of the leading streaming services to show content recommendations and display ads within the streaming interface to drive additional revenue. Applying programmatic capabilities to new and existing ad formats such as Tiles will continue to create new advertising touchpoints in CTV.

Tiles: The smart TV home screen is a composition of a “hero” or a large image(s) in a grid of what we call “tiles.” This grid is a combination of apps and content, including suggested content. The Tile ad format is a native tile that can be intelligently managed to tailor the user experience with relevant content and apps.

Power of the Home screen

A user’s first impression when turning on the TV influences their overall viewing experience. Being able to intelligently manage that page to maximize user engagement is paramount. brings intelligence and control to the management of content on the home screen. Tiles combine creative ad capabilities with the operational efficiencies and cost savings that come with the SpringServe platform’s end-to-end management of monetization, targeting, and reporting all in one platform.

Hero Tiles: A Hero Tile unit takes up the full or part of the top portion of the home screen environment. It can support both display and video providing a great opportunity to make a big impression as soon as the user turns on their smart TV.

Tiles provide an ideal placement for other services to advertise new shows or offerings in the form of those tiles on the home screen, as well as pause ads and sponsored scene selection in-app. This attracts new demand opportunities from brands looking to reach engaged audiences through contextually relevant content and messaging while fueling discoverability. Keeping viewers satisfied with relevant content recommendation encourages further viewing, providing even more engaged audiences that advertisers will pay to reach.

Innovative application of Tiles: There are multiple ways that the Tile format can be utilized. For example, a weather vendor could leverage forecast data to show weather warnings while simultaneously advertising their weather app to encourage downloads.

Programmatic’s influence

As supply and demand for CTV inventory grows, streaming services need agile ad serving tech to preserve and elevate the user experience. As well as identifying and maximizing the demand for the inventory, there’s a need to create workflow efficiencies through end-to-end management of demand, targeting and reporting. Programmatic ad serving can reduce pressure on resources with automation, backed by reporting to maintain transparency and control over the user experience.

Programmatic buying also benefits from new data types in CTV. Based on an , audience targeting capabilities are one of the top reasons why buyers are increasing CTV spend, whilst the offer of creative formats and personalization also made the top eight. Given smart TV OEMs have access to valuable content metadata, they’re positioned for lucrative CTV gains now and in the future. Applying this data to fill ad spaces, such as Tiles, with contextually relevant, brand appropriate ads or content recommendations will drive further value. Exploring and embracing flexible monetization strategies such as where both direct and programmatic ad sales can be leveraged will open up huge opportunities.

If you are interested in testing Tiles in SpringServe, please reach out to your account manager or email CSignore@springserve.com.

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