New Research: How Brands Can Connect on OTT and CTV

More people than ever are cutting the cord—53 million to be exact—with another 16.8 million considering it over the next three months, according to new research from Resonate’s customer intelligence platform. These consumers are using over-the-top (OTT) platforms instead, which provide access to TV shows and movies via the internet through services like Netflix and Hulu, without the need for a traditional cable subscription.

Connected TV (CTV) is a subset of OTT in which content is only viewable on a TV (Roku, Apple TV, for example), whereas other OTT platforms can be viewed on tablets, iPhones, and laptops. Not everyone who watches TV via a streaming service has cut the cord, but they’re 38 percent more likely to have done so.

With 52 percent of the U.S. consumers streaming video content on an OTT or CTV app or device, it’s become an important channel for brands to reach customers and prospects, especially younger generations (as 21 percent of OTT/CTV users are 25 to 34 years old). If you want a piece of the OTT/CTV pie, get in line. This market expanded 54 percent in 2018 and is expected to grow another 39 percent in 2019, making it the fastest-growing segment of the ad-supported media marketplace. Cable and satellite TV subscribers are declining at the highest rate since 2010, while the playing field for ad-supported OTT and CTV apps and services is getting more crowded.

Effective OTT and CTV marketing requires brands and agencies to reach consumers on a deep, individual level in order to boost conversion. Here’s what Resonate’s analysis revealed in terms of how brands should be crafting their OTT/CTV strategies.

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Who is the OTT/CTV user?

Before formulating the right offers, messaging and creative, you need a holistic view of what drives today’s 115.5 million OTT/CTV users. Our insights reveal that the personal values that influence their daily decisions include having the freedom to be creative, maintaining a good public image, being able to prove their competence and skills and enjoying life’s pleasures and living an exciting life. They value work beyond income, buy food based on nutrition and have physically active families. In their spare time, they enjoy hiking and camping, going to the movies and playing video games.


When you’re crafting the messaging and creative for an OTT/CTV campaign, develop ads that focus on themes of creativity and excitement, as well as maintaining a good reputation and proving competence. You should also highlight a healthy lifestyle that includes exercising, eating well and spending time outdoors, as that’s part of their daily lives.

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Where can you reach them?

OTT/CTV users watch HBO, Showtime, and Starz more than any other networks, and 31 percent of them spend 20-40 hours online every week. Their preferred CTV devices are Google Chromecasts, Amazon Fire TV Sticks and Rokus, and they’re 19 percent more likely to binge-watch shows.

Their top TV shows are Marvel’s Jessica Jones, A Series of Unfortunate Events and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and their strongest weekday viewership typically occurs between 6:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. On the weekends, these users are most tuned in between 12:00 p.m. and 5:00 pm. Keep these viewership preferences, devices and times in mind to get the most effective results while devising your media strategy.

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