Over the top TV (OTT) or Connected TV (CTV) have pretty much made their mark on the advertising landscape — enough to stake their claim as a mainstay in the advertiser’s official bag of tricks! Currently, there are more than 130 CTV applications1 available to viewers, and that number is growing rapidly; like a new city popping up in the middle of the desert. But, with any new city comes new bad guys. There must always be a sheriff in town to make sure that the law is followed and the citizens are safe. The industry turns to brand safety providers like Genius Monkey, to take on that role of sheriff, helping to keep malicious activity from hindering their ads’ reach and limiting the overall impact of their marketing campaign.
With over 200 television and video streaming services, and the numbers growing rapidly, along with the cold weather quickly descending upon us, there are more viewers consuming connected TV than ever. In fact, according to Comscore, 66% of households that are Wi-Fi enabled are CTV users.2 The amount of time viewers spend in front of their television screens has increased exponentially, and is expected to continue to do so over the long haul.
As we learned with the advent of programmatic advertising, there is always a looming threat of fraud and the endangerment of brand safety. But, how much of a threat is there with OTT, and how are we supposed to prevent any malicious fraudulent activity? One of the things that marketers find appealing about OTT is that it doesn’t come with the same degree of brand safety threats as say, digital video. That’s not to say, however, that brands needn’t worry about security and brand safety. As technology progresses in the marketing field, malicious fraudsters will develop new methods of generating illegitimate impressions. With any form of advertising, there must always be protective measures to fight malevolent activities.
We went to our own Jeremy Hudgens, Genius Monkey’s CRO and Director of Client Solutions, to ask what measures OTT marketers can implement to assure brand safety. Hudgens said, “It’s like we’ve always preached here at Genius Monkey. Advertisers could eliminate a significant amount of ad fraud by creating multiple layers of protection within their systems. This would be in addition to any integrated validation partners, or what is essentially employed by the networks. The top three preventative measures that come to mind are:
- Incorporate the use of quality tools and partners to bring in quality traffic, as well as all network validation tools, trading desks, exchanges and demand-side platforms. Quality in equals quality out.
- Filter your traffic that’s already been filtered by incorporating a third-party validation system. Even better, use a second one to catch what the first one missed at the placement level.
- Eliminate any publishers that provide low-quality malicious bot traffic by blacklisting them at the DSP and/or network level.
The great news is Genius Monkey does this all for you at no additional cost if you are looking for an easier way and don’t want to invent your own wheel.
The way marketers can assure safe, fraud-free traffic that will lead to a successful campaign is to actually track it with proper and accurate attribution and run it in conjunction with other campaigns such as display, search and video. This is an area that many advertisers miss out on because sometimes the basics are not as exciting. But they are critical.
Genius Monkey has always believed in teaming up with the right partners and ALWAYS “policing the police” instead of depending solely on the network or DSP for their integrated safety tools. These are the steps to keep the fraudulent activity to a minimum by doing things right, whether it be OTT, CTV, display, video, mobile, or podcasts. This can be effectively done without reducing reach and will result in far better ROI. By adhering to these safety standards, you will get the biggest bang out of each advertising dollar you spend.
1-2 Comscore OTT Intelligence, Custom Reporting, 2020, US