Addressable TV halves channel switching and improves ad recall, claims Sky

While the US market is more advanced, Sky’s AdSmart tool is now being adopted by more UK players

Addressable TV cuts channel switching by 48% and boosts ad recall by 49%, according to data from Sky.

The media owner has released the findings of a five-year study – which harnessed facial coding, emotional analytics and interviews with 300,000 UK subscribers across 130 campaigns – to assess the impact of programmatic TV campaigns delivered via its AdSmart Service.

Analysis from 52,000 ad breaks from brands including Barclays showed channel switching rates were sliced in half (48%) when addressable ads were shown in the first three slots of a commercial break, compared to standard linear ads.

It also revealed that addressable ads increased spontaneous recall. So, when an ad was targeted towards viewers, they were 10% more likely to remember it compared to an ad broadcast on traditional TV.

However, it’s not all bad news for linear: addressable solutions were found to be particularly effective when combined with more traditional commercials. Brand awareness increased by almost 22% when the two were combined. Where the frequency of addressable ads was higher or equal to linear exposure, ad recall was boosted by 49%.

With eMarketer forecasting that programmatic digital video ad spend will climb from £967m in 2017 to £1.58bn this year in the UK, the figures demonstrate how addressable TV can deliver ROI on marketing spend.

While the US market is more advanced, Sky’s AdSmart tool is now being adopted by more UK players, including Virgin Media, which counts 30 million subscribers.

As well as the ability to segment audiences by geography and demographic, there’s an additional benefit to the tech being floating by Sky; its targeting can be used to run more inclusive creative around underserved holidays such as Ramadan to audiences that have historically not been catered to.

Since AdSmart, which is also used by Channel 5 across its VOD properties, was first launched in 2014 Sky Media has launched more than 17,000 addressable TV campaigns for 1,800 brands.

As well as delivering improved recall and cutting down channel flickers, Sky’s data also found programmatic TV to drive more engagement than its linear offering. Facial recognition analysis revealed that when addressable ads are on TV, viewers’ attentiveness to the screen can be as much as a third higher (35%) and on average they were 21% more engaged in the content.

Purchase intent was also up against linear (7%) and even more for new-to-TV brands at 20%.

Jamie West, director of strategy and capability planning at Sky Media, said: “We’ve seen from day one the amazing impact AdSmart has had for advertisers and it’s great to share our learnings of the AdSmart journey so far.

"TV is well-known for its impressive brand building abilities. Now with clear evidence of the effective performance of highly targeted campaigns across TV, its full potential is being discovered and unleashed by broadcasters, viewers and brands.”

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