The evolution of the premium video economy pushed forward this quarter – and this year – with both video views and ad views growing at a rate of over 30% across all measures.
Over the top (OTT) set-tops, dynamic ad insertion (DAI) and multiscreen led most of the monetisation growth.
According to FreeWheel’s latest video monetisation report, long-form on-demand and live content viewing were both up, 56% and 129% in Q4 2015 respectively, and they continued to drive overall industry growth. Interestingly, the report found that the majority of monetisation now comes from somewhere other than desktop and laptop environments, representing 60% of video ad views, with OTT devices and smartphones leading that advancement. Across the big screen, OTT saw an impressive lift in monetisation at 76%, while, on the handheld end, smartphones led the charge in growth at 92%.
“In a major shift, monetisation outside of desktop and laptop environments accounted for a majority of dynamically served video ad views,” the report noted. “Propelled by 76% growth across OTT (Roku, Apple TV, Chromecast, gaming consoles and smart TVs) and 92% on smartphone devices, as well as the inclusion of STB VOD, which amounted to 10% of total delivery, never again will the browser be the first stop for digital video content.”
Also, programmers enabled for set-top-box video on demand (STB VOD) DAI saw an average of 20% of their ad view volume generated there, making it the second-largest device in video ad delivery, and a symbol of the new era of consumer choice. Programmers in Europe primarily monetized their long-form programming through DAI, pre-stiching ads into live streams.
“We expect both the volume and share to continue to increase as the cable and satellite operators go live across the DAI environment, tapping into their existing large scale volume of on-demand viewing subscribers,” FreeWheel said. “The 32% of monetisation happening on the big screen (i.e. STB plus OTT) is indicative of the increasing promise of ‘unification’ (which is critical to achieve scale) and a recognition from the buy-side that the big screen represents a safe, viewable, engaging environment to reach their audiences.”
Ad views from TV everywhere (TVE) products meanwhile continued to grow at a strong pace of 142%, with 65% of all long-form ad views coming from behind the authentication wall. This was in turn buttressed by a 169% growth in pay-TV mobile app viewership. Pay-TV apps have also become increasingly popular venues for syndication, accounting for 9% of all programmer ad views. Monetisation on these apps increased 169% vs. Q4 2014.
“For yet another quarter, we see the value and adoption of TV Everywhere products showing strong signs of progress,” the report said.
Viewers have long made the philosophical leap that television is not the physical set but the content itself, and with publishers and advertisers fully buying in, we see both consumption and distribution of premium video programming expanding across all screens,” the report said.