Reasons Why Advertising on Streaming Platforms is Crushing Traditional Television

The advertising industry has long predicted that TV ad revenue would collapse with video on demand services like Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime gaining momentum. As per eMarketer, the TV ads started declining in 2017 and will continue to reduce as more users ditch standard cable TV services. The TV ad spend is expected to rise in times of big events like summer Olympics premier but otherwise expected to continue its decline.

With the rising number of streaming services available in today’s digital space, it’s no surprise that viewers are leaving traditional TV for more flexible video streaming platforms. New video streaming services for programming from sports to family shows are popping up every day. With more TV alternatives than ever, more viewers are turning to online options that surpass traditional distribution like Disney+, Netflix, HBO Now, Hulu, etc. That is why traditional advertising brands must steer their clients to spend more advertising dollars on streaming platforms.

Advantages of advertising on streaming platforms

Audiences today have a lower tolerance for long-form advertisements. Therefore, the traditional models of ads are steadily failing- many people even change the channel during commercials. That is one of the reasons why people choose to subscribe to advertisement-free streaming platforms like Disney + or Netflix. However, there are video streaming services that use a combination of both subscriptions and paid ads where viewers can watch videos with ads or choose to go ad-free with subscriptions. Moreover, the streaming ads are in a different format than that of traditional TV which is typically of a long length and untargeted. With streaming advertising quickly gaining momentum, now is the time to create a video streaming website to utilize the lucrative opportunities offered by OTT to help your business grow.

Let’s look at some of the major advantages of advertising on streaming platforms.

More specific demographic targeting

OTT VOD streaming services are a great platform to reach millennial viewers who are constantly searching for convenient ways to consume entertainment. Unlike traditional TV ads that limit geographic targeting to specific zones. Streaming advertising allows brands to choose pre-determined zones or specific zip codes in the desired area. Additionally, instead of broadly targeting your users with your ads hoping to reach the right viewership, streaming advertising allows you to reach viewers directly.

As a streaming platform operates online, it is possible to deliver targeted ads based on viewing habits, location, and other data of users it may collect in the same way as Google and Facebook does. Another selling point is the uniqueness of the platforms themselves. For example, Hulu does not plan to sell its live TV inventory on a standalone basis in the future. Instead, it is focusing on selling packages across its advertisement-supported subscription and live TV services. The idea behind this strategy is to allow advertisers to buy TV the way viewers are used to watching it- It can be either on-demand or live.

Capability to reach all types of screens

In the earlier days, television was the only medium for advertising brands to reach their target users. However, today streaming services offer advertisers plenty of opportunities to reach their viewers to all different types of devices of all sizes. From smartphones to laptops, desktops, and connected TV, there is no shortage of ways to bring forth your brand in front of your audience. Streaming advertising allows brands to implement both short and long format ads that are optimized for all platforms and devices. This ensures that your brand messages reach the right audience.

As a result, your viewers can see your ads when they are at their home, on the go, or anywhere. Furthermore, the ads are different from traditional TV ads in length. Streaming advertisements are mostly 90 seconds in length as opposed to 2-3 minutes of lengthy commercials telecasted on the TV. So streaming ads not only can reach your audience where they are, the ads can be designed in a way to appeal to the short attention span of today’s audiences.

Facilitates customer segmentation

While traditional TV advertising broadcast ads to everyone who turns on the TV channel, OTT VOD streaming advertising allows you to target the right customers. This makes it easy to collect personal data of viewers on an individual level, which helps for personalizing their viewing experiences better. This also helps advertising to reach user groups directly and fine turn your brand message to the target audience based on their interests, income, gender, zip code, etc.

More affordable

When compared to traditional TV advertising, streaming advertising is more affordable. Estimating ads on TV is expensive, especially when you need to cover a wide range of viewers. However, streaming advertising is not just affordable, but is cost-efficient as well. You can reach the right audience and engage them efficiently and cost-effectively.


OTT VOD streaming provides the flexibility to choose how to display the ads in front of viewers. Advertising brands can decide whether to allow viewers to skip the ads after a few seconds or force them to watch the entire ad. However, pushing your viewers into watching the full ad will cost a lot more money compared to the option where they can choose to click away from the ad.

Control over ad content

Streaming advertising is greatly customer-centric and allows advertisements to have more control over the ad content. When a viewer visits a video streaming service to view a program, it is out of interest. If they chose to view a particular show they wouldn’t mind watching ads for a few seconds before or between the actual program.

This will help your messages to reach the viewers to make it a personalized experience than bothering them with random ads they are not interested in. You can choose streaming platforms specific to your offerings. For example, a sports brand can choose to advertise on an exclusive sports streaming platform to reach out to the right audience with the relevant message.

Powerful analytics tools

Analytics is the most important advantage streaming advertising offers in understanding how effective you are in reaching your viewers. Almost every streaming platforms features the ability to capture user data and important insights. This way brands can measure their return on investment. With accurate analysis, it becomes easy to set advertising budgets as well. To get the best of your money, you need to focus on delivering quality content as well. High quality content is an essential aspect  which can be a distinction regardless of whether you have a large budget to play around with or not. You can also consider partnering with local multimedia services to come up with quality content.


Traditional TV still reaches millions of viewers with powerful programming. However, with the rising trend of cord-cutting, lack of targeting options, and the huge cost of advertisement, TV advertisers are facing more limitations on the effectiveness of their advertising campaigns. ThinkwithGoogle states that the time spent on OTT video streaming sees a 28% growth over the year. Many users already have subscribed to at least one video streaming service in addition to the TV subscription. Whereas a major share of users has already cut the cords of streaming services instead of a satellite package. Your business can also benefit from the same move. Unlike traditional TV ads, streaming ads can be better targeted, more affordable, and not limited by the restrictions imposed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on TV broadcasters.

Amanda Smith is a marketing professional with expertise in strategies to engage customers and improve business opportunities. She is interested in marketing communications and likes to keep abreast of new trends and developments.

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  1. One of the major reasons why digital marketing is taking over the traditional marketing channels is because the internet has enabled businesses to interact with targeted audiences in real time.

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