This article was originally published by Adweek.
Connected TV is one of the most rapidly growing markets when it comes to market share and ad spend, and those trends have only accelerated in the past two years during the pandemic.
For the largest players in the space, commerce practices are emerging as an area of priority.
At an Omnicom Media Group event held in conjunction with CES, Jeremy Helfand, svp and head of advertising platforms for Disney media, entertainment and distribution, described commerce as a “tremendous opportunity” in the connected TV space.
“If you look at how commerce has really been embedded in the social experience and the ease of transacting for consumers, we would like to bring that kind of capability into the living room and into the CTV environment for consumers,” said Helfand.
For Disney, the challenge comes with enabling commerce experiences in a way that doesn’t interrupt the content and storytelling a consumer is experiencing.
“How do you leverage other understanding of what we know about the consumer and the relationship we have, especially in the direct-to-consumer environment, in order to enable ease of transacting, but do so really with the choice and control in the viewer’s hand versus disrupting the storytelling journey?” asked Helfand.
He pointed to learnings from the pandemic, including increasing comfort with QR codes, as techniques that are now embedded in the advertising experience.
“You can help move the commerce from the large screen on to the mobile device in order to help enable transacting, and that’s one area that we have been doing a lot of work in as part of our Gateway Go commerce products, and you’ll continue to see more from us in that area,” said Heldway.
At Discovery, the team has been busy rolling out interactive and shoppable ads on its streaming service Discovery+.
“Given the nature of our content, particularly the food and home content, it is so built for the shoppable experience,” said Lisa Holme, group svp and president of content and commercial strategy, adding that Discovery sees commerce as a huge opportunity.
“Click here to get the ingredients for that recipe that you just watched someone cook, or click here to buy that table or that lamp that you just saw … it’s so built for that,” said Holme.
‘The sky’s the limit’
The explosion of the smart and connected TV landscape has also brought about new ad formats and increased options for interactivity, including pause ads, interactive shoppable ads, binge ads or more targeted ads.
“The relevance that you can get with the connected TV experience is unlike anything that’s been historically available,” said Holmes. “We’ve scratched the surface, but because you have a one-to-one relationship with the consumer and they can interact with you, the sky’s the limit in terms of what will come.”
Binge ads, pause ads and shoppable ads are all new to Discovery+ within the last couple months, and Holme said there will be more to come, but did not share specifics.
Disney is also holding its innovation close to its chest heading into its Tech Showcase in March and this year’s upfront season.
“I will say that building on this idea of understanding consumer behavior, and better aligning formats, and where you insert advertising to an understanding of that behavior is the foundation of where you’ll see innovation in formats for Disney,” said Helfand. “You’ll continue to see us leaning into formats and advertising approaches that remove disruption for from the storytelling journey.”