Advertisers in India have shifted media budgets to OTT channels in tandem with the spike in media consumption since lockdown measures were put in place on 25 March.

According to data released by media research firm TAM, ad insertions on OTT platforms doubled in April, which marked the first full month of the COVID-19 lockdown, over March, defined as a pre-COVID-19 period.

  • February: 11,000 ad insertions
  • March: 16,000 ad insertions
  • April: 33,000 ad insertions

Video streaming platforms tracked includes Eros Now, Zee5, Disney+, Hotstar, MX Player, Sony Liv, YuppTV, VOOT and Viu. In addition, the share of OTT platforms among e-commerce, media, entertainment and social media advertisers rose from 61% in March 2020 to 87% in April 2020.

The research firm also found that the number of categories, advertisers, and brands advertising on OTT platforms came down month on month in April 2020 as many sectors pulled back on advertising spends given the economic slowdown induced by the coronavirus outbreak. The number of categories reduced by 20 in April 2020 as compared to the previous month. Similarly, the number of advertisers and brands dropped by 16 and 43 respectively month on month in April 2020.

However, there were new categories advertising on the small screen. These include 34 new categories, 82 new advertisers, and 119 new brands inserting ads on OTT platforms in April 2020.

The hierarchy of the most aggressive sectors advertising on OTT platforms has changed as well. Food and beverages scaled to the top from second position, as services dropped from the top position to third. Education saw a massive jump from number 13 to number 5, as ad insertions for the sector witnessed a huge rise – 35 times during COVID-19 compared to pre-COVID -19 period.

The top 10 list of categories in April 2020 were mainly related to day-to-day essentials during the lockdown period. Categories like shampoos, sugar, tea, edible oil and tooth pastes were new on the list. The top 10 categories had nearly 70% share of ad insertions on OTT platforms.

Hindustan Unilever (HUL) which ranked second with 7% in March, topped the list in April with a huge 38% share of ad insertions on OTT platforms. The top advertisers contributed 80% share of ad insertions in April compared 46% in March.

Three brands were common between the top 10 lists of March and April, while seven brands were new in April and all from the FMCG sector, contributing nearly 50% share of ad insertions on OTT platforms.

An earlier report from TAM found that general entertainment channels and movie channels are the most preferred vehicles to advertise on TV, with a combined share of 53%. National channels’ share of ad volumes from this category of advertisers was 67%, while regional channels commanded a 33% share.

Sourced from ETBrandEquity