James Collins, Senior Vice President, Media Network at Rakuten Advertising offers a practical guide for advertisers looking to improve the impact of their business with a slightly different approach – one that builds on typical targeting using demographics.
Pick up at 9 a.m. this morning. What are you doing? Where? What is your state of mind and how did you feel at the time? Now think about 9 o’clock last night and ask yourself the same questions.
Chances are (unless you’re chronically overworked) your state of mind and emotional state is different in these two incidents – you are different versions of yourself throughout the day. And the same goes for every person within your target audience.
An individual’s receptivity to messages and suggestions is based on mood: a state that is fluid, never static. This is also true for advertising and brands should take this into account when developing their strategies, campaigns and media plans to reach their audiences.
With that in mind, here are five tips on how this approach can be integrated into a larger outreach strategy to make a campaign even more effective.
1. Understanding a life in “Moments”
The time spent in these moods can be thought of as “Moments” – a period of time that is far from momentary; it could be the length of a blockbuster, a sports documentary or an episode of the latest must-see series. Likewise, it could just as easily be the hours a couple spends on the couch looking at the entire cabinet itself.
It is in these âMomentsâ that a brand really wants to connect. The targeting and placement offered by Connected TV Advertising Inventory (CTV) makes it the premier platform for aligning a brand with its audience when it really matters, and when appetite and mindset is. there to resonate best. This way, brands can think more strategically and use a ‘Moments’ approach to supplement their traditional broadcast spend.
2. Think about how to engage the 21% of viewers who are âout of reachâ
Traditional live linear broadcast ad spend is currently much higher than CTV ad spend. This reflects how broadcasting has historically dominated media buying; the result of both his inheritance as alone way of advertising on television, as well as its aptitude for brand awareness on a large scale. It works – albeit to a limited extent given media consumption patterns.
Our 2020 report on Advertising-based video on demand (AVOD), found that across Europe, up to 21% of consumer audiences (20% in the UK) are streaming but do not watch live TV. These cable cutters are therefore inaccessible through a broadcast linear TV advertising model.
We can expect to see more investment in CTV over the next few years and more thought needs to be given to how to engage with the 20% using a comparatively smaller budget allocation.
Which brings me to …
3. Make the most of the context
Imagine setting up an ad campaign for a forgiving yet affordable skin care product with a target audience of health-conscious young women with reasonable disposable income. As a media planner, you can safely assume that you are reaching the right audience by using traditional frequency-based brand awareness strategies to create recognition and consideration.
But now you have the option to create a contextual positioning layer via CTV. A spectator will have explicitly selected watching a cozy 12A romantic comedy, for example, because that’s the mood they’re in at that time; whereas on linear TV they might have stumbled upon it – that does not guarantee the Moment that CTV does. As such, the advertiser can be quite confident that the ad appearing in the romcom is aligned with the emotional context in which the audience is and therefore is most receptive to it.
It elevates a brand awareness strategy, through a combination of demographics with demographics agreement, and a subsequent review of how the latter can augment the former. The profile of the consumer is not enough on its own – the scenario in which it finds itself must be taken into account to make small budgets smarter.
4. Identify where the budget savings can come from
A âMomentsâ based media planning approach will provide significant budget savings when integrated with a traditional delivery model. This is because CTV provides a more identifiable window to align advertising with the content being watched and therefore the mood of the audience at that time.
While forecasts predict an increase in ad spend in 2021 (in so doing, promising signs of recovery from problems caused by the pandemic), the disciplined use of budgets has taught industry how to make them work harder. These lessons can be carried over and the same models can bring higher rewards – an opportunity that Moments definitely brings.
The decision to make budgets work harder, campaigns resonate better, and brands remember better isn’t hard to make, and it doesn’t involve tearing up the rulebook.
5. Use emotional resonance for logical action
As humans, we often react emotionally before logically – or, as Daniel Kahneman said in the bestseller ‘Think fast and slow ‘, the thought patterns of System 1 and System 2 respectively. We respond most quickly – instantly, subconsciously – on an emotional level, before conscious thought takes over. As such, advertising is always undertaken on an emotional level to begin with; a gateway of sorts.
The ad works as a response to System 1 thought, in terms of how it grabs attention and then informs a consideration. The âmomentsâ also reflect this journey, but by being contextually based on the mood of the viewer, the initial connection can be strengthened.
A large-scale advertising campaign for a major sports brand will build brand awareness of its customers through repeated exposure through an integrated mobile, TV, print, online and OOH strategy. Repetition promotes recognition and connection, but a Moments-based CTV strategy can elevate this by adding a more powerful and refined emotional location to the brand.
By James Collins
Senior Vice President of Media Networks