What will 2021 mean to the advertising world?

What will 2021 mean to the advertising world?

30 second summary:

  • Despite the general downfall and darkness, some industries actually skyrocketed in 2020.
  • In 2021, some i’s should score and cross some t’s in the area of ​​transparency and data solutions from first-party providers.
  • When it comes to games and sports, live streaming is a huge ad-friendly zone that is expected to expand further in 2021.
  • Header bid solutions for OTT and CTV, new attribution and monetization functions are the advertising technologies that will gain momentum in 2021.
  • Prediction algorithms for AI and ML will further revolutionize personalization in the advertising world.

Surreal, eye-opening, melancholy, thought-provoking … 2020 has not been another year in this century so far, as those who wear T-shirts with the logo “All I want for Christmas is 2021” will eagerly confirm. And while there is still much to be done before all of the pieces of the 2021 puzzle can be put together, the year ahead has many hopes to be fulfilled. No pressure, 2021, but you’d better be good! In this cautiously positive sense, let’s briefly revise the year 2020 based on what we learned from the OTT Executive Summitbefore we can warmly welcome the coming year. Read on for an overview of the future of advertising.

Looking back at 2020

The reality of 2020 dictated new rules, values, people’s habits and a new way of looking at what was “normal”. Unsurprisingly, despite the general downfall and darkness, some industries that fit really well into this transformed layout have actually skyrocketed. They say that every cloud has its silver lining, and that was true even for 2020.

Take, for example, CTV, whose advertising spending has increased by 19% this year, according to the IAB, mainly because of the pandemic and mass blockades.

“Television has forever been a top funnel medium, a medium that you used to promote awareness but not purchase. The interesting thing about Connected Television is that it offers the opportunity to be both a powerful branded medium and a medium that is very attractive to marketers trying to get actual results. “

Scott Rosenberg, SVP / GM of the platform business at Roku

Digital devices, including the CTV machines, have to some extent become the custodians of people’s mental well-being. That fact is backed up by the Leichtman Research Group report that counted 400 million Connected TV sets in the US earlier this year.

Another strange result of the pandemic is the change in how viewers started consuming OTT content. Nielsen shared her findings on that growing Trend of co-viewing as people were attached to their homes and family members for a long period of time.

The developments on the Internet and in 5G networks have further increased CTV’s score and made the market for app developers magnetic. As a result, the streaming spiked and turned around 85% of Americans in streamers, to Roku.

“Streaming for the first time overtakes live TV”, Andrew Hare, Senior Vice President, Research at Magid Associates, Inc.

In addition to accelerated The number of subscribers to existing streaming services described by eMarketer has seen a real surge in the industry with the introduction of new platforms like Apple TV +, HBO Max, Disney +, Paramount +, Quibi (currently shut down), and others.

“The streaming war up to that point was really between the big three [Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Hulu]However, with access to all of these high profile services from Disney, Apple, Warner Media, NBCUniversal, and others, there could be a major disruption to the hierarchy. And the interesting thing is that many of these new services have taken different approaches to tackling the Big Three. ”

Steve Nason, director of research at Park Associates

The growth grows with a CTV viewing time 81% In 2020, consumers admittedly had fewer problems with ads, according to Nielsen and the abundance of entertainment options CTV has in its goody bag. Assuming ads could be the only price they’d have to pay for the content.

“Consumers found our service and services like ours really profitable. Ad support has become a really great way to get your news, movies, and possibly your content library. ”

Colin Petrie-Norris, managing director at Xumo

“43% of adults in the US stopped watching a show to buy or consider the product they were watching on screen. The conditions are very ripe between consumer reluctance to go into physical retail and more advanced ad products that allow the right ad to be placed in front of you at the right moment.

Scott Rosenberg, SVP / GM of the platform business at Roku

In fact, eMarketer’s QM report highlighted an increase in AVOD sales by 31% This means that established AVOD platforms like Pluto TV, Xumo, Vudu, Crackle and Tubi will soon have to share the space with many newbies who are ready to hit the jackpot by introducing AVOD or a hybrid model combining SVOD and AVOD- Functions.

“Two thirds of the total ad time is spent on advertising-financed platforms. For the first time, 53% of those over 18 said they watched at least one AVOD service. 51% in the US say they would prefer an ad-based free model to a no-ad subscription or EST [Electronic Sell-Through],

Andrew Hare, Senior Vice President, Research at Magid Associates, Inc.

I’m looking forward to 2021

While it’s always fun to mysteriously stare at the crystal ball to see the future, eMarketer shared some pointers to help make everyone’s predictions a little more informed. EMarketer estimates that the CTV ad spend will be met $ 11.36 billion in 2021, around 40% more than in the previous year. In addition, a reduction in networked TV CPMs due to a meteoritic increase in supply. Let’s take a closer look at where this could lead us from different perspectives without our head in the clouds CTV landscape.

1. Transparency

Data protection concerns have always been the stumbling block on the Internet. Users want to know who is collecting what data and for what purposes. It looks like a few years after the introduction of GDPR 2021, some i’s will finally dot and cross some t’s in this area. Since Google announced it would remove third-party cookies from the Chrome browser, the advertising world has relentlessly tried to develop a new unified data approach for first-party providers across all channels. Since advertisers aim to secure their access to consumers, direct deals through PMP (Private Marketplace) or PG (Programmatic Guaranteed) are overweight. And while these are effective ways of reaching audiences, there is a risk that smaller players will not be kept up to date. In the meantime, the networked TV arena has raised the issue of transparency from high to critical. Hopefully 2021 will make uniform solutions for delivering first party data to advertisers clearer. Alternatively, we have a good chance of seeing further fragmentation in the market (which is not good) coupled with advances in addressability (which is good).

2. Investments

Streaming of all shapes and sizes continues to rise, and 2021 is expected to unleash its potential even better. Live streaming, especially when it comes to games and sports, is a unique opportunity for marketers to reach a growing segment of esports streamers and watchers who have banded together in 2020 92% of the Z and Y populations of the US and UK generations, based on data from GlobalWebIndex. Certainly, the consumer anchoring at home has oiled the wheels and contributed a lot to this trend. Outside of sports and gaming, AVOD is certainly another streaming playing field that is currently gaining momentum. A snowball effect that created streaming services made viewers tight and less against advertising. This tendency should hold the course. So if there’s a perfect time and place to get the most out of your advertising budget, it will undoubtedly be streamed in 2021.

3. Formats

Assuming the customer’s attention span was up eight seconds Obviously, in 2020, brands will find it harder to get that attention over time, according to Oracle. Appealing formats are ideal here. Searchable galleries, shoppable ads, carousels, TV-to-mobile elements, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are only part of the mantra for all advertisers. The only way to get clients through all the stages of the funnel is to stay creative and up-to-date and make their experience easy, yet memorable. As for channels, it’s worth getting on your nerves and pursuing an omnichannel strategy that includes DOOH (digital out-of-home), which has been rocking the digital advertising boat for quite some time. Given that consumers are expected to spend a lot more time outside their homes to make up for 2020, experimenting with new formats would be the way forward when restrictions are eased in 2021.

4. Advertising technologies

Due to the fact that programmatic, as a transactional method, is achieved $ 5.72 billion According to eMarketer, the talks about scaling header bid solutions for OTT and CTV in 2021 have a clear rationale. This technology enables buyers to access dynamic auctions while publishers can send ad requests to multiple buyers and improve their monetization results. In addition, the year 2021 will surely offer marketers more opportunities for attribution and promotion, be it to showcase the customer journey for OTT channel owners with the Attriboost Analysis software or the provision of comprehensive monetization functions via the Allroll self-service platform. If you stay at the top of the AdTech innovation curve, doors open to lost profits.

5. Intelligent automation

A recent focus on minimizing personal interaction between people has sparked interest in automation through AI (artificial intelligence) and ML (machine learning). This ultimately laid the foundation for adoption and made these technologies more accessible to businesses. In the context of Connected TV, the advances made by AI led to the launch of ACR (Automatic Content Recognition), sourced from smart TV players like Samba TV, Samsung Ads, and LG’s Live Plus. Their prediction algorithms create an additional level of personalization for the CTV viewers. With marketers undoubtedly admiring personalization, ACR will play an important role in the CTV industry in 2021.


It’s time to say goodbye to 2020. In line with the rest of the world, the digital space has rethought and reinvented a lot, demonstrated resilience and agility, and tried to anticipate and comfort consumers in every single change in their behavior. However, these changes have resulted in an entirely new outlook for 2021. Data protection, investment opportunities, appealing formats, advertising and automation technologies will make the digital world even more exciting in 2021 than before. So buckle up and let’s go!

Alex Zakrevsky is the CEO of the all-roll marketing platform for CTV / OTT channel owners. Innovator, product lover, CTV, and programmatic enthusiast. He believes that the quality of the product always wins.