Original Digital Video (ODV)

ODV (Original Digital Video) spells good news for publishers

The IAB released the Original Digital Video Consumer Study, giving us an insight into media consumption. So what does it mean for digital advertising?

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Last month, the IAB released the Original Digital Video Consumer Study. This study was based on US audience’s TV viewing, compared with original digital video (ODV) viewing habits. The results aren’t particularly surprising but they do paint an interesting picture.

The study gives an idea of where media consumption is heading and this is something publishers should be taking note of. For advertisers, it’s just as poignant in defining where their spend should be directed. For traditional TV media owners, it’s about being aware of the facts and adapting.

Before we dive in and look at the results, let’s clarify ODV.

What is Original Digital Video – ODV?  

Essentially, it’s originally produced online video. It’s also defined as ‘professionally produced video’ and is made for online distribution and viewing (not TV).

Who creates ODV?

Typically, ODV is created by a range of professional media companies. For example, Wall Street Journal Live News, Glamor DO’s and Don’ts and purely online media such as YouTube Original Channels.

What other digital content owners are competing for audience attention?

TV Online

This is made up of network TV shows like Pretty Little Liars and The Walking Dead or sites on ABC.com and HBO.com.

Amateur Online Video

This is videos created by regular people – homemade videos. These videos are generally short-form content.

The IAB outlined some of its key takeaways:

The growth of the original digital video market continues

The year-on-year growth continues for ODV. However, there’s little to no growth for online TV and amateur video.

Original Digital Video beats regular TV among viewers

ODV is popular among viewers because content can be watched anywhere, at any time – fitting around individual schedules.

Original Digital Video is becoming more ingrained

ODV’s improved quality and accessibility make it more and more of a habitual exercise. This means that not only are more people switching to ODV, they’re watching more of it.

Social media wildfire

ODV is shareable and engaging and so, this is leading to more engagement with the same brand.

If growth is the name of the game, ODV has all the winning moves

The story of ODV is one of growth. Approximately 63 million US adults are now viewing ODV on a monthly basis.

Whilst TV online and amateur video have healthy, respectable viewing numbers, the growth rate isn’t there. This suggests more people are moving to original video, and that’s a trend worth noting, especially where budgeting is concerned. The potential for advertisers to reach audiences with ODV is huge. As ad tech companies develop new ad formats, it’s likely that we’ll see more premium inventory in this area.

TV isn’t dead, we’ve changed the way we use it

Remember when the remote control first came about? Holy batman, that changed lives for the lazy. Not only did it nurture the inner couch potato in us all, but it meant we could enjoy more variety too. Simple but revolutionary.

As with everything, we continue to innovate. The TV is still sitting in the room, it’s just connected to the internet now. Audiences have adopted habits that reflect what they expect of the internet. We have so much choice, and just like ravenous consumers we are, the more choice we have, the more we want.

Whilst laptop/desktop and mobile devices remain the most popular devices for viewing ODV content, connected TV is only marginally behind. This area has had the biggest impact on the reduction of ‘regular’ TV watching. It’s the business model, not the TV set that needs to adapt now.

Social creatures

It’s not surprising that ODV viewers are discovering their content via word of mouth and social media. There’s an interesting gender divide in the way content is discovered. Females are discovering the majority of their content via friends, family, and social media. Whereas their male counterparts tend to follow links, recommendations and search results. This just paints a picture of how much video content is being discovered socially, rather than on a publisher’s own site.

Modern media offers disparate audiences so much variety, it’s astounding. Content is becoming personal, but it’s also incredibly niche so segments are becoming more identifiable. ODV makes it possible for media companies to present quality, highly-engaging and targeted content. Now, advertisers have the technology at their fingertips to engage through connected devices in a way they never have before.

It shouldn’t come as a shock that viewers like the flexibility of ODV. The fact is, we all have different devices we use daily and we have much more choice, control and a completely different way of engaging with content we love. This IAB study shows a significant shift, but this is something we’ve known for some time – just ask any millennial!

Millennials drive the habitual change, the next generation takes it even further

Personally, I don’t have a TV subscription. I didn’t include it in my ‘broadband bundle option’ because I knew I had other options that suited my budget and my viewing preferences.

It’s little wonder that 18 to 34-year-olds are the biggest driver of this significant viewing evolution. What’s also interesting is that the advertising is more memorable in this format, contrary to some popular belief. This is just the tip of what’s happening right now. The ads in the very near future will be dynamic, highly-personable and definitely more interactive.

Millennial audiences have sparked the adoption and growth of connected TV, ODV and amateur video. But this should pave the way for an even more, user-focused digital model. Traditional models of media, including TV, shouldn’t begrudge this change, it should be seen as a real opportunity.

There’s no need to hollow out the old set and put Mr goldfish inside just yet. But you may just find the communal ritual of watching TV becomes more personal, more enjoyable and dare we say, more profitable?


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Posted by simonholliday