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CTV FAQs: Get to know more about CTV Advertising on Smaato’s OTT Platform

We’ve been getting a lot of questions lately about CTV inventory, and how Smaato can help. We hope this FAQ will serve as a helpful guide.

CTV FAQs Overview

Q:

First of all, what’s the difference between Over the Top (OTT) and Connected TV (CTV)?

A:

OTT refers to any video content that’s streamed via the internet, instead of cable or satellite transmission. CTV falls under OTT, but refers only to connected TVs that use the internet to stream video. This can mean the TV itself is connected to the internet, like a Smart TV, or has an adapter that allows an internet connection. This includes gaming consoles, streaming sticks (like ChromeCast and FireTV), and external boxes (like Rokus).

Q:

So, does that mean gaming console inventory is available as CTV inventory?

A:

Absolutely. At Smaato, we have access to Playstation and Xbox inventory.

Q:

How do you measure CTV impressions?

A:

Unlike mobile web or desktop streaming, connected TV ad content isn’t clickable. There is an opportunity, however, for advertisers to include QR codes in their creative design. Viewers can scan these QR codes on their mobile devices to engage with the ad content. This mimics click behavior, but allows users to continue to engage with their streaming content. Smaato is introducing this feature in Q4, and recommends that advertisers design their CTV creative to include QR codes in the meantime.

Q:

What is the split between skippable and non-skippable inventory for CTV?

A:

All of our CTV inventory is currently non-skippable, which boosts impressions, as users must watch ads all the way through before returning to their content.

Q:

What are ad pods?

A:

Ad pods are groups of ads played back-to-back, just like a commercial break on TV. Each ad within a pod is referred to as an ad slot. To learn more about ad pods and slots, check out our blog.

CTV FAQ

Q:

Do you support Pod-based bidding at Smaato?

A:

We do! We give our publishers the choice whether they want to auction their inventory on a per-pod or per-slot basis. When publishers opt to auction inventory by pod, we’ll send marketers a single bid request with multiple impression objects. Each impression object represents a slot in the pod.

Q:

What will be the criteria for bidding on the first slot in a pod?

A:

The first slot in an ad pod includes the sequence: BidRequest.app/site.imp.video.sequence in the bid request. That way, marketers and advertisers who want to bid on the first slot of a given pod can keep an eye out in the bid request for that sequence.

Q:

How can frequency capping be implemented at a pod level?

A:

At Smaato, we do frequency capping dynamically to improve viewer experience and publisher and marketer brand sentiment. We do this automatically and at no cost for our customers. By default, our ad podding technology has creative deduplication (the same ad creative will not play twice in the same pod) and competitive separation (no two ads of the same IAB category can play in the same pod).

Q:

Do marketers/advertisers or DSPs need to create any structural changes in their system to incorporate pod-based biddings?

A:

Yes, marketers and advertisers will need to support bid requests with multiple impression objects. If they want to bid on more than one slot in the pod, they will need to also support bid responses to those with multiple bids. More information can be found at the end of our OTT/CTV Advertising eBook.

Q:

What are the top connected devices e.g Roku TV, Firestick TV, etc.?

A:

The top 10 connected devices are:

  1. Samsung TV
  2. Roku TV + sticks
  3. Amazon Fire TV + sticks
  4. Apple TV
  5. Toshiba TV
  6. VIZIO TV
  7. Insignia TV
  8. Sony TV
  9. NVIDIA TV
  10. Xiaomi TV
What are the top three OTT/CTV app categories?

Q:

What are the top three OTT/CTV app categories?

A:

The top 3 app categories are Arts & Entertainment (IAB 1), News (IAB 12), and Television (IAB 1-7).

Q:

What does the distribution of inventory look like across popular app categories?

A:

The distribution on the Smaato platform is, at the moment, as follows:

  • Arts & Entertainment: 57%
  • News: 41%
  • Television: 0.5%
  • Other: 1.5%

Q:

What are best practices for the new OpenRTB extension for OTT call BidRequest.app/site.imp.video.ext.ssai when it comes to creative files?

A:

Please provide either a high quality mezzanine file in the VAST creative within the bid response or low, medium, and high quality renditions of the creative file in the VAST creative within the bid response. This way, our SSAI service can transcode ads more quickly and more easily, improving performance.

Q:

What are you doing to prevent malicious CTV server-side ad-insertion (SSAI) fraud?

A:

It’s true that some CTV advertising platforms come with risk. Using a third party SSAI/DAI service that sits between the publisher and the ad server creates a high risk of fraud. At Smaato, we completely eliminated this risk. We are proud to do all our server-side ad insertion in house, and for free. You can read more about it in our SSAI blog.

Q:

What resources do you offer to help me better understand OTT/CTV Advertising?

A:

Check out our free, in-depth guide to OTT/CTV Advertising to learn more about OTT, CTV, and how Smaato can help you reach audiences around the world and on any device.

Have more questions? We have the answers.

Get in touch, and we’d be happy to cover any questions you have.

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