Time spent viewing linear TV around the world may be declining but its reach remains unparalleled, while the spread of smart and connected TVs is set to open up new opportunities for advertisers, according to a new WARC report.

The latest Global Advertising Trends study states TV is at a crossroads, noting that daily time spent viewing this channel was down four minutes in the first half of the year but advertiser demand remains strong.

Spot cost-per-thousand (CPM) is increasing in all key markets, from a significant 14% in a developing market like India, to smaller rises in developed markets (4% in the US, 2% in the UK).

Linear TV remains by far the top medium for global display advertising spend, attracting over $140bn ad investment in 2018, or 41.9% of display spending in WARC’s key 12 markets – more than double mobile internet in second place on $58bn – although that dominant position is slowly eroding.

The key to TV’s continued success, the report says, is that it reaches 96% of individuals in these markets each month, and 71% each day on average.

And the evidence suggests that brands with more than $10m to spend skew towards the channel. WARC’s Media Allocation Report, which draws from campaign data from over 15,000 case studies, shows that successful, high-budget campaigns invest more in TV while the proportion of budget allocated to digital decreases.

But media planners will soon have to consider the impact of addressable TV, the technology of which gives advertisers the ability to employ user data to combine TV’s reach with an expanded relationship to sales and lower-funnel KPIs.

The time scale is not clear, however: this tech is still in its infancy, there are issues around measuring ROI, and the experience in the US indicates that viewers are reluctant for their personal data to be collected to facilitate such advertisements.

That said, “addressable TV will be the next stage of evolution”, believes James McDonald, Data Editor, WARC, acknowledging that the $1bn spent here this year is a fraction of total TV investment.

“TV still accounts for the majority of daily video consumption, and the lure for advertisers is leveraging consumer data to get the right message in front of the right people at the right time,” he said.

Sourced from WARC