7 Benefits of Incorporating CTV in Your Omnichannel Marketing Plan

In 2022, 92% of U.S households were reachable by CTV programmatic advertising (according to Statista). The amount of CTV users is growing with more than 110 million users among Gen Z and Millenials alone.  As such, more consumers are choosing streaming services than traditional television formats like cable and satellite.

What does this mean for advertisers? It’s time to make the switch to digital advertising formats like Connected TV (CTV).

And many already are. According to eMarketer, CTV ad spending projections are expecting it to hit $25.1 billion in 2023, $29.3 billion in 2024, and $33 billion in 2025. 

As with any up-and-coming ad format, brands and advertisers need to analyze the channel and decide if it is suitable to implement into their respective omnichannel marketing plans. Based on goals, you need to know how a channel will push your campaign in the right direction of achieving your desired KPIs.

So, to help guide you in making that decision, we’ve outlined seven of the top benefits advertisers see when choosing to implement connected TV and how it complements the other channels you may already be using. Let’s dive in.

What is Connected TV (CTV)?

Connected TV (CTV) is a smart device where users can access streaming television, live television, and the internet for apps/browsing. This includes both devices with a built-in internet connection with pre-installed apps, such as a smart TV, and separate devices that use an internet connection to access content through the television as the display mechanism, such as an Amazon Firestick. Some of the most popular are Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Xbox, and Playstation.

How is CTV different from OTT?

OTT (over-the-top) is content where users stream television content through networks or devices accessed on any device, including Smart TVs, mobile smartphones, tablets, & laptops. Popular OTT providers include Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Disney+, and HBO Now.

Although OTT and CTV are different functions of internet-accessed content, many times they are used interchangeably, and when buying ad placements, you can purchase them across both OTT and CTV, or separately. So, for the purposes of this blog, CTV is used to encompass both OTT and CTV.

7 Benefits of CTV Advertising 

1. Today’s consumers are streamers

The average American household has four streaming service subscriptions and by 2026, there will be 80 million cord-cutting US households. With these platforms, viewers have access to a plethora of shows and movies across networks as well as original content. And when viewing this content, consumers choose where they watch, whether that be a connected TV, desktop, tablet, etc. As consumers continue to flock these platforms (many with ad-supported tiers), a growing audience can be reached through CTV ads.

2. More cost-effective to reach premium networks than linear TV

Many advertisers aren’t able to meet the minimums with linear television. Rather than buying into a television network with CTV, there is flexibility in choosing a price structure: cost per metric (1,000 views) or cost per completed view (CPCV). basis, making it more affordable to reach your audience on the big screen. 

3. More Unique Opportunities with CTV than linear TV

In addition to flexible pricing, CTV reporting is more robust than you typically get across linear TV buys. Advertisers can see which segments are viewing their ads and make adjustments accordingly.

Another unique opportunity advertisers have is to run high-impact creative across CTV. For example, a QR code to drive users to convert, or a store locator to drive them to the nearest store to purchase the product. Television advertising is no longer just for awareness – and these creative formats in CTV advertising allow for measurable conversions. 

4. 100% fraud-free and brand-safe curated CTV marketplace.

One of the biggest concerns advertisers face when creating their omnichannel marketing plan is ad fraud. When incorporating CTV, you’re purchasing via Private-Marketplace (PMP) or an Open Auction, eliminating ad fraud and brand safety concerns.  

An open auction occurs on actively managed supply via major players such as SpotX, Samba TV, and Freewheel. A private marketplace buy is through a curated marketplace giving advertisers privileged access to premium publishers that are: 

  • Negotiated
  • High-quality
  • Human-curated
  • Marketing objective-optimized 
  • 100% ads.txt verified

5. High completion rates, 100% viewable

Continuing in the realm of ad fraud, advertisers are understandably concerned about viewability. As we shift more and more to a digital world and advertisers and consumers are more accustomed to digital ads, advertisers want to ensure their message is received. CTV is the ideal format to justify these concerns. 

Unlike other digital video formats (which have tremendous benefits of their own), CTV is non-skippable; consumers have to watch the ad to the end to continue viewing their programming. This is why the industry-standard benchmarks sit at 94% video completion rate (VCR) and 100% viewability.

6. Precision Targeting Capabilities

For advertisers who have long relied on linear television advertisements, it’s essential to understand that CTV not only allows you to reach a growing audience but also allows you to target your desired consumers better. When investing in linear television ads, you’re paying for your ad to reach all viewers with different demographics and contextual attributes. Some may be interested in your product, some may be part of your audience, but some may be neither, and in turn, you’re wasting those critical ad dollars.

With CTV advertising, deliver ads to contextually relevant placements through pre-determined content categories, ensuring that you reach consumers interested in your brand or product. For example, at Digilant, we use device ID technology to reach households within your target audience that use CTV devices. 

7. Track online and offline sales with attribution partners to measure the campaign’s impact on performance

CTV has long been considered a channel suitable for the awareness and consideration stages of an omnichannel marketing plan. As most CTV ads aren’t clickable, advertisers have difficulty trying the ads to actual sales. 

However, with various measurement and attribution solutions available, advertisers now have access to this data, how the ad ties directly to sales (both online and offline), justifying this ad format for all stages of the buying journeys.

At Digilant, we use our partnerships with MediaMath, The Trade Desk, and more, which gives advertisers the ability to measure the impact of CTV on sales lift, track exposure across your CTV/OTT campaign, and tie it to offline sales with measurements including: 

  • Viewer response and impact by weekday/daypart, device type, creative, campaign flight, app, etc.
  • Audience overlap and deduplicated reach by publisher
  • Key metrics such as frequency, conversion rates, and cost per visit
  • Reach, frequency, and recency analytics along with impressions and responses by geo.

How CTV complements other channels in your omnichannel marketing plan

As mentioned above, CTV is a channel that can be used across every stage of the buying journey. With solutions such as cross-device and sequential messaging, advertisers can continue conversations with consumers once they view a CTV ad. For example: 

  • CTV and display: Once a consumer watches a CTV ad, it is followed by strategic display ads with a timely call-to-action
  • CTV and paid search: Once someone familiarizes themselves with (or is remind of) your brand with a CTV ad, they inevitably search for products or services to buy. A paid search campaign ensures that search benefits your brand.
  • CTV and paid social: Just as consumers are streaming video more, they are also more active on social media. So as they browse their social feeds, you can follow up a CTV ad with either display or video ads. 

The benefits of CTV clearly outline why advertisers are making the switch to this digital-first channel. First and foremost, more consumers are tapping into this TV-viewing form. But beyond the growing viewership, the flexibility, pricing, and audience targeting abilities make it a clear winner.

The icing on the cake? Advertisers can track all marketing efforts in one place with robust measurement and attribution. With these tools, brands have a clear, overall picture of how all digital channels are working in conjunction to take their omnichannel marketing plan to success.

Digilant’s CTV solutions are built for your brand

With the ever-growing popularity of video watching, we recognize the importance (rather, necessity) of a solid digital video solution, CTV included. Our planning and insights strategists make informed decisions based on your goals (clicks or video completes, for example) and where your digital video will perform best. From there, our strategic partnerships with MediaMath, The Trade Desk, top publishers, and a robust curated marketplace ensure your ads are served across premium placements. And finally, we tie it all together with custom-built, automated, holistic analytics services to allow our clients to visualize their data, all in one tool. 

Are you interested in learning more about our CTV solutions? We’re eager to talk more about how we can help you reach your goals. Contact us today.

Advanced TV in 2023: Align Ad Formats with Your Goals

 Advanced TV in 2023

A Digilant Get Smart Series, Part 2: Align Ad Formats with Your Goals

In our newly released whitepaper, Advanced TV in 2023: The Trends, Technology, and Tools You Need to Succeed, we outline everything advertisers need to know about the rapidly expanding and evolving video advertising landscape. Over the next few weeks, we’ll dive deeper into these trends and solutions over a five-part blog series. If you missed part 1, outlining how to dig deep into data to reach your audience, check it out here.

Download the full whitepaper here.

Today’s consumers are opting for streaming services more often, continuing cord-cutting trends, and severing their ties to traditional cable TV. As advertising technology works to keep up with consumer habits, better targeting across these viewing preferences entices advertisers to shift their dollars toward video ad campaigns. This is where Advanced TV, the umbrella term encompassing any advertising that occurs before, during, or after a video stream on the internet campaigns, comes into play.

With traditional broadcasts, the goal is to reach as many consumers as possible. Those who use streaming services have a different experience. By using a streaming service, you connect your TV (or laptop, phone, or tablet) to the internet. This connectivity provides robust data that allow you to segment and target your audiences with more precision. To the average consumer, ads may seem the same as they’ve always been, but that is not the case; ads are now targeted to individual households, giving you more control over your reach, budget, and results.

Why is Video Advertising Effective?

The future of video advertising is bright. Why? Simply put, consumers love video. It is the preferred method for consumers to interact with media. Let’s look at the numbers. Every week in February 2021, consumers in America streamed 143.2 billion minutes of video content. In February 2022, that number went up to 169.4 billion minutes. Today, 85% of American households have at least one streaming service.

So why is video advertising effective? It’s not just because people love it; it’s because people have so much access to it. Consider the following benefits of video advertising:

  • More device options and streaming services to choose from for precise audience targeting
  • More cost-effective than linear TV advertisements
  • Allows for more personalization and interaction with your target audience
  • Creates entertaining and memorable brand sentiment
  • Provides multiple avenues to advertise through
  • Generates revenue from increased market demand

It makes sense then that marketers should put more resources toward streaming platforms, advanced TV, and CTV because that is where the market is. Advanced TV advertising offers more precise targeting, which results in a higher ROI and allows you to meet consumers where they are instead of trying to get them to meet you. With marketing campaigns being so specific to the individual (or individual household), it is crucial that marketers wisely use their budgets to reflect this.

How to Get Started with Video Advertising

In the grand scheme of things, streaming services haven’t been around that long. Even so, there have been several improvements that directly benefit advertisers. As data tracking evolves, budgets can be spent more wisely, and marketers can utilize programmatic video ad spend.

The following guidelines can help you set effective video advertising strategies in motion and ensure you appeal to audiences that are adopting advanced TV.

1.Use the right format for your goals.

Consumers have more choices now in where they want to consume content. Concurrently, major streaming providers are working to keep up with the competition by adding ad-supported tiers, as seen most recently from HBO, Disney+, and Netflix.

With these two things in mind, it’s imperative to ensure your campaign is set up for success from the start by establishing which platforms or services are right for your brand. Some ad formats work well with CTV, while others are more suited to advanced TV. It’s your job as an advertiser to establish which of these options is most suitable for your campaign, however as a general rule of thumb, we recommend the following ad formats based on your goals:

2. Determine if you want clicks or completes.

Are you trying to get people in the door or trying to get them to stay? With consumers having an average attention span of 8 seconds, it’s an important question to consider. Even an extra 15 seconds might be too much for a consumer to sit through.

When establishing an Advanced TV strategy, consider the following:

If you want to drive clicks, it’s best to include a call to action at the beginning of your advertisement. While the goal may not be for the completion of ads, you do want to bring consumers in the door.

Conversely, video completion-based goals don’t need a call to action — they need a strong hook. These should be shorter videos, and make sure you choose the format that meets your desired end goals.

3. Take advantage of non-skippable ads.

With high completion rates, advertisers can reach viewers when they are already engaged with the content they are watching. You then have the opportunity to retarget those who have viewed the ad through site retargeting, paid search, etc. You can even place CTAs like QR codes in the ad for consumers to take action from the first impression.

4. Ensure you invest in ad-supported platforms.

Price is a top consideration for consumers when choosing a streaming subscription, and as more viewers flock to these platforms, you have an even greater opportunity to reach your target audiences. Ad-supporting streaming is an advertiser’s goldmine.

5. Determine if you should run programmatic or direct advertising.

While choosing to purchase ad space directly with a publisher, you have the benefit of receiving premium inventory with guaranteed ad spots for specific programs. However, limitations include limited reach and more expensive buys.

On the flip side, when purchasing programmatically, you have a higher reach with a lower minimum spend. But you may not have as much control over where your ads are placed. This is where you should refer to your campaign goals to choose the best options for your needs.

How Digilant Can Help with Your Advanced TV Strategy

Digilant is an omnichannel media partner built to help companies navigate the often-confusing world of digital advertising. We execute omnichannel strategies that are data-driven, actionable, and effective. Digilant comprises 100+ data-driven media minds and advertising technologists that can help bring your advertising campaigns to life.

If you’re interested in learning more about the future of video advertising or how advanced TV options can work for your business’s needs, contact our team. We’d be happy to help!

For more about the best trends, strategies, and solutions across Advanced TV, download our full whitepaper here.

Looking for more information about setting up an Advanced TV strategy? Check out the third part of our blog series, “Implement Measurement Tools from the Start,” here.

Advanced TV in 2023: Dig Deep into Data to Reach Your Audience

 Advanced TV in 2023

A Digilant Get Smart Series, Part 1: Dig Deep into Data to Reach Your Audience

In our newly released whitepaper, Advanced TV in 2023: The Trends, Technology, and Tools You Need to Succeed, we outline everything advertisers need to know about the rapidly expanding and evolving video advertising landscape. Over a five-part blog series, we’ll dive even deeper into these trends and solutions. To start, we’ll outline the advantages of advanced audience targeting available through Advanced TV ad buys.

And, make sure to head to part two which dives into the different Advanced TV ad formats available to advertisers. Check it out here.

Download the full whitepaper here.

Major U.S. cable TV and satellite TV providers have lost more than tens of millions of subscribers in total since 2016. As a result, advertisers are left with lost dollars and fewer eyes on their Linear TV advertisements. Rather than losing out, advertisers are pivoting to Advanced TV –  the overarching term encompassing any advertising that occurs before, during, or after a video stream on the internet – as streaming services and general increases in video consumption take hold.

Despite the many benefits of Advanced TV, it is a very different animal when compared to the linear TV market. Some of the most common challenges we hear about the space include:

  • Barrier to entry
  • Lack of understanding of how the data works
  • Gaps in data make it hard to understand success
  • Difficulty attributing customer conversions to specific campaigns
  • Siloed data leads to a reliance on demographic or content viewership information.

Digital advertising, after all, is still an emerging space which means advertisers are still figuring it out. While solutions enter the market to combat these common challenges, there is a widening amount of CTV inventory, creating prime opportunities for advertisers willing to work through some of the kinks and reap the benefits of Advanced TV advertising.

The Market Opportunity in Connected TV Advertising

In today’s advertising world, video is everything; it’s the preferred method for consuming content. So, tapping the potential to advertise across video is a huge opportunity.

Look at the numbers behind CTV and OTT opportunities alone. The potential audience reach is virtually endless as more people are streaming TV than ever before. ~85% of U.S. households having at least one streaming TV service, and each household has an average of four streaming service subscriptions. Plus, the number of platforms streaming content is growing. 

In terms of budget, more advertisers are now opting to invest in digital forms since the price point can often be less across Advanced TV advertising when compared to linear. Advertisers can save money in production costs because digital advertising allows you to repurpose video assets across different channels such as social, CTV, and in-stream.

How Advertisers Can Implement Data-Driven Targeting Access Advanced TV

Now that you understand the opportunities and future of Advanced TV advertising, it’s time to take action. Here are five ways to best maximize ad opportunities as CTV takes center stage.

1. Understand Your Audience Consumption Habits

The first step in any successful Advanced TV campaign (albeit digital advertising in general) is to understand your audience and the content they are looking at. 

If you’re accustomed to Linear TV buys, you know they took a broader approach to audience targeting – making purchases based on network or genre. This is where the benefits of Advanced TV come into play. You have the tools and data to dive deeper into your audience, their preferences, and habits to ensure you reach them exactly where they consume content. This is especially important as there are more channels and platforms than ever before.

Gone are the days of hoping you reach your audience; with Advanced TV audience analysis tools, you can see exactly which channels and even programs your audience is viewing. While this is helpful in general, it also provides peace of mind in the fast-paced environment we work and live in. If a new, trendy, enticing channel pops up in the market, these tools enable you to understand if your specific audience is even on these platforms and, as such, if they are worth the investment. 

2. Implement Top Tier Data Solutions

Once you know where your audience is spending time, it’s essential actually to get your ad in front of them. This is where top-tier Advanced TV data targeting and segmentation come into play. 

The power of CTV data enables you to purchase ad placements based on targeting attributes like audience, behavior, or content, just as you would with programmatic ads. At Digilant, we build targeting options with top-tier, quality data such as:

  • Automatic Content Recognition (ACR): Extracting audio and still images from pictures and analyzing content with an algorithm to categorize / segment.
  • First-Party Data: Targeting users from a CRM list to the household level.
  • Demo or Interest: Mapping audiences available from providers to the household level.
  • Contextual TV: Gathering content from publisher to target based on content language, rating, length, show name, etc.
  • User Activity: Mapping audience activity (online or offline) to correct household.
  • Unique Targeting: Targeting based on Real-Time Audience and Linear TV Capabilities.

3. Don’t get complacent, track your goals and continue to enhance your data

Advertising is often trial and error. Determine the best data to layer on, whether that be audience or content data — or both. Test out multiple data sets to see which ones perform the best. As with most advertising campaigns, experimentation will help you reach your goals more effectively as you learn from previous examples and find what works (and what doesn’t) with your target audiences.

Take time to set up parameters and KPIs that will enable you to see how well an ad is performing. You can also look at audience reception, time watched, and the number of clicks or completes. Ultimately, the goal is to gather enough data so that you can accurately create more effective advertising campaigns and put your programmatic video ad spend to the best use.

How Digilant Can Help with Your Advanced TV Strategy

Fortunately, this process is made easier when you rely on experts like Digilant. Contact us today to learn more about our omnichannel marketing strategies and see how CTV can be a viable next step in your marketing strategy.

For more about the best trends, strategies, and solutions across Advanced TV, download our full whitepaper here.

Looking for more information about setting up an Advanced TV strategy? Check out the second part of our blog series, “Align Ad Formats with Your Goals,” here.

How to Create an Effective Podcast Advertising Strategy

The podcast industry is continuing to grow by leaps and bounds. The most recent numbers show that audiences are tuning in to more podcasts more often, and podcast advertising is even the most recalled type of ad, with 86% of respondents saying they remember seeing or hearing advertisements through a podcast.

 

Even though podcast advertising is here to stay, there are still some challenges advertisers face. For example, as podcast advertising grows, you might question just how effective podcast advertisements will be in the coming months. Will the market become too oversaturated? Is it too late to get started? How do you actually get started?

 

Here we will discuss potential barriers to podcast advertising, what you can expect with podcast advertising trends this year, and our tips to maximize podcast advertising tactics in your brand’s overall digital advertising strategy.

 

Podcast Advertising Trends

 

Podcast audiences are loyal. Whether they have listened since the first episode or binge-listened to every episode upon discovering it, podcast audiences are committed to keeping up with their favorite shows.

 

Even with loyal listeners, podcast monthly listener numbers have grown to approximately 116 million Americans. This data indicates that current listeners aren’t turning to other platforms and that new listeners are being drawn in as new high-value and unique shows enter the podcast market.

 

As this area continues to grow and diversify, there will be more opportunities to reach niche customers and more memorable ways to engage with them. The most important thing to note for podcast advertising is that this platform is almost entirely about quality rather than quantity. There is no need to invest in top-charting podcasts; instead, take the time to find the shows your target audience is listening to and invest there. Ultimately, now is the time to home in on an effective podcast advertising strategy for your target audience.

 

Challenges of Podcast Advertising

 

Such a fast-growing industry is bound to have challenges, especially as the world of digital advertising continues to adapt and evolve. With podcast advertising, the main challenges can be summed up into three categories: measurement, format, and production.

 

Measurement: Fragmented Measurement and Targeting

There continues to be some confusion and concern about how podcast ads are measured and accurately attributed to show success. It is a heavily siloed environment with consumers listening on phones, computers, smart speakers, and cars across different streaming platforms, including Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and YouTube. As a result, it can be overwhelming to attribute, analyze, and apply analytics from different advertising buys to build an effective strategy.

 

Format: Balancing Host-Read Podcast Ads and Pre-Recorded Ads

The success of podcast advertising is most directly associated with host-read podcast ads. Consumers feel a personal connection to the host and trust their recommendations. However, host-read ads are more expensive and can date themselves quickly. For example, catching up on a favorite podcast could result in hearing an advertisement with a now-expired code. The solution that bridges this gap? Programmatic pre-recorded ads.

 

Pre-recorded ads offer more flexibility, control, and variety. But it is critical to balance those benefits with the authenticity and personalization of host-read podcast ads. As more podcasts work to successfully incorporate creative ad formats that also allow for dynamic insertion, the more easily advertisers can jump into programmatic podcast advertising.

 

Production: Establishing the Basics

Many advertisers face challenges when getting started. While most other forms of digital advertising rely on visual elements that can be repurposed for different sizes and ad placements, podcast advertisements come with a list of questions that are harder to answer, especially in an ever-changing environment. What are the minimums? How often are creative components switched out?

 

Figuring out the logistics of podcast advertising causes a halt in the creative process many advertisers are familiar with. As a result, advertisers might be hesitant to jump in because of the confusion around who to partner with to create an effective advertisement and where to do it.

 

Maximizing Your Podcast Advertising

 

Even with the challenges of implementing a new digital advertising tactic, the benefits of podcast advertising outweigh the challenges when done correctly. Here are a few things to keep in mind when creating your podcast advertising strategy:

 

1. Utilize measurement and attribution solutions to quantify your investment.

As with any digital advertising method, it is critical to accurately track and analyze the results of your ads to better strategize marketing efforts as a whole. The variety of streaming devices and podcast platforms make this process somewhat tricky but not impossible.

 

Whether you’re already investing in podcast advertising or just getting started, be sure to look into resources that can track conversions across multiple devices, measure the impact of ads across multiple devices, and gain a holistic view of the consumer journey and behavior.

 

Digilant tip: When deciding who to partner with for podcast advertising buys, consider their attribution capabilities and partnerships. At Digilant, we enable advertisers to track conversions across multiple devices and gain accurate insights into your campaigns’ performance — no matter the platform or device the ads are played on.

 

2. Lean into creative, entertaining, and memorable messaging.

Dynamic audio creates a more engaging experience for podcast listeners. Experiment with testing two or more audio spots and leveraging dynamic audio to learn what messaging resonates with the audience and create more messages tailored to them.

 

Digilant tip: For longer campaigns, consider swapping out audio every few months and featuring product releases or seasonal promotions.

 

3. Keep frequency in mind.

Digital audio advertising offers a focused one-to-one connection; therefore, the frequency at which your ad is heard is essential. The goal is to be memorable but not annoying. A good balance for this purpose is a frequency of three to five times a week. Opt for higher frequency if you’re promoting a new brand or a time-sensitive offer. Alternatively, long campaigns and well-established brands should aim for a lower frequency.

 

Digilant tip: Repurpose current traditional radio messaging for a more consistent message delivery across multiple media platforms.

 

Break Into Podcast Advertising With the Help of Digilant

 

Podcast advertising is going to continue picking up speed and traction. These trends mean that now is the perfect time to build a podcast advertising strategy that maximizes your brand’s impact and reaches your target audience where they are.

 

Ready to dive into the world of podcast advertising? Connect with our Digilant team today. We’d be happy to help!

2023 SEO Trends: Using Voice Search in Marketing Campaigns

We’re in the midst of a revolution in how we search for information. Rather than typing out a question, people are turning more and more to voice searches. This new trend stems from three primary sources:

  • Voice search is faster than typing. Surprisingly, even voice search results might be faster than typed searches. A study by Backlinko revealed that a voice search takes a quick 4.6 seconds to load a results page, while a standard typed search comes in at a sluggish 8.8 seconds.
  • The responses of voice assistants have vastly improved since the onset of voice search. PwC reports that with the development of voice search optimization, over 93% of users are satisfied with the accuracy and speed of their voice assistants.
  • Voice assistants have expanded beyond phones. Microsoft reports that almost three-quarters of all U.S. households will eventually own at least one smart speaker.

For those looking to level up their SEO initiatives, incorporating and considering the trends behind voice search can be incredibly effective.

How to Optimize Content for Voice Search

The question here for brands is how to optimize content for voice search so that your listing is the answer offered to the consumer. When consumers ask a voice assistant a question, it uses rankings to select an answer. Elements like SEO, Google rankings, Yelp reviews, and proximity-based data are all utilized when the voice assistant searches for answers.

While working on your Yelp rankings is an excellent long-term strategy for your brand, it’s far more effective to optimize your content. A straightforward approach to increase SEO for voice search is by providing content that answers common questions consumers might ask their assistants.

Consider industry-specific questions consumers might ask, such as:

  • What is the best cleaning product for carpet stains?
  • Where is the best burger restaurant near me?
  • Find a chocolate chip cookie recipe.

Answering specific questions in your content can help voice search more effectively find your solutions and boost your brand recognition.

As voice assistants continue to improve, shopping-enabled features will make SEO optimization for voice search even more important. Picture this: A voice assistant user has asked, “Where can I buy a hammer?” Not only does the search offer a location, but it also queries whether the user would like to purchase the product online or add it to their cart — effectively simplifying the entire shopping experience.

How Can You Integrate SEO Into Your Voice Search Campaigns?

Including voice search considerations in your SEO efforts increases the likelihood that your product or service will be offered up to the consumer. As such, there are several strategies that Digilant has developed for successful SEO. Consider the following tips to boost your voice search optimization efforts:

1. Think in topic clusters.

Most AI determines what questions it can answer by examining the main topics on a website, making topic clusters an effective tool when optimizing your content and information.

For example, a healthcare clinic could write an informative article about “how to choose the right doctor for me.” This blog post would provide high-level information that includes all potential patients. From there, the clinic could extend this topic cluster by providing specific information about different kinds of doctors and service lines.

2. Focus on featured snippets.

Featured snippets are lists of questions related to your initial search that appear at the top of a page in Google. Right now, featured snippets are an SEO goldmine. Not only are they the first result users see, but (if your content is good enough) the first part of your answer might also be displayed, linking the consumer directly to your site.

How does voice search come into play here? Voice searches tend to be longer than typed queries and use more natural question structures. By aligning your answers with those that Google uses for a question, your answer is more likely to be the featured snippet that’s read aloud by the voice assistant.

3. Prioritize simple technical adjustments.

There are a handful of more technical improvements and adjustments that can be made when streamlining your content toward voice search trends. Ensure you’re set up for success by accomplishing the following:

  • Create a Google Business Profile.
  • Ensure your site is mobile-friendly, as 20%of all mobile queries are made using voice search.
  • Check your site’s load speed.
  • Consider how you can incorporate videos into your strategy, as they are also apt to rank in voice searches.
  • Tailor your content toward a multilingual audience if that applies to your business.

What Does the Future of Voice Search Look Like?

Simplifying the purchase process is the way of the future. Remember the example above? Some outlets and businesses already offer this service. Amazon devices, for instance, already use this feature.

Digilant has developed strategies and resources to bring clients the most current marketing tools, as we’ve been studying how voice search is changing SEO. At Digilant, we constantly evaluate our partnerships to ensure we have the best data and targeting options for our clients. This includes ensuring our campaign analysts and media strategists are up-to-date on the most successful strategies to win voice assistant selection.

Additionally, we have tangible solutions that advertisers can implement when voice search marketing is a top priority. For brands looking to use our digital marketing services, this includes:

  • Advanced audio solutions to specifically target ads across smart speakers like Amazon Echo, Sonos, and Google Nest.
  • SEO and SEM strategists who can tailor your content based on current trends.
  • Strategic partnerships with the top providers of voice assistants: Google and Amazon.

If you’re ready to see how Digilant can take your voice search optimization to the next level, contact our team today. We’d be happy to help!

Revisit: How to Tell When a Non-Skippable Ad Is the Right Choice

In April 2022, our blog How to Tell When a Non-Skippable Ad Is the Right Choice broke down how to determine which video ad format – skippable or non-skippable – suits your brand. While there are many reasons and justifications for either ad format, we wrote that the ultimate driver in deciding which ad format to choose is based on your goal(s) for the campaign. 

With this in mind, we provided a general rule of thumb: 

  • If you’re hoping to promote general brand awareness and information to consumers about your brand, choose non-skippable ads. 
  • Skippable ads are the way to go if you want to drive action, clicks, or some other conversion. 

It may seem premature to revisit a blog a mere twelve months later. However, today’s consumers shift habits in the blink of an eye, and new ad formats and opportunities come and go in months. Recently, we’ve heard an abundance of chatter surrounding video content from clients and industry peers – a newfound focus on areas like:

  • Re-prioritizing ad production in favor of more video content
  • Understanding the pros, cons, and opportunities of different streaming services (especially in light of major players like Netflix, Disney, and HBO adding ad-supporting tiers)
  • Testing budgets in the powerful, albeit intimidating, world of TikTok

These are just a few examples of how advertisers are dipping their toes or, in some cases, plunging headfirst into the pool of video advertising. Still, one thing is for sure: more advertisers are investing in video and, as such, are coming across platforms that offer them the choice of skippable or non-skippable. 

So, in 2023 what’s the correct answer, and is our advice twelve months past still relevant? Let’s dive in.

Video Consumption in 2023

A year later, consumers continue hitting play on their favorite video content. Video consumption is at an all-time high and is the most popular media format in the US. Here are a few stats showcasing just how powerful video consumption is in 2023: 

  • The average consumer watches 18 hours of video weekly, about 2.5 hours per day. That is 2 hours a week than a year ago and 7.5 hours more than the last three years. (Source: Wyzowl)
  • 72% of consumers prefer videos to learn about products or services. (Soure: YouGovAmerica)
  • 82% of Global Internet Traffic in 2022 Came From Video. (Source: Cisco)
  • More than 75% of video viewing happens on mobile. (Source: eMarketer)

  • Video is the number 1 source of information for 66% of people. (Source: TechJury)

So, in an environment where video reigns supreme, the question of which ad format is best – skippable or non-skippable – remains relevant, if not even more critical, to ensure advertisers get the biggest bang for their buck. 

Revisiting Digilant’s Tips for Using Non-Skippable Ads

In our 2022 blog post, we offered the following four questions and answers to help advertisers determine whether non-skippable ads are the right choice: 

1. Is there an emotional element involved?

2. Does the ad format match your goal?

3. Are you only looking at the completion rate?

4. Do you have a strong digital strategy?

Below we’ll outline each to uncover if our advice remains true today.

1. Is there an emotional element involved?

2022: Answer in Summary

Consumers will remember how you made them feel rather than what you said. So, if you opt for a non-skippable ad, make sure it’s memorable. 

2023: Revisit

While the above reigns true, it’s safe to double down on the importance of this tip. As the amount of time spent in front of a screen and consuming media increases, so does the number of ads consumers see. The average consumer sees anywhere from 4,000-10,000 ads every day. As such, they are increasingly talented at tuning out boring or irrelevant ads. 

In short, advertisers must compete with fellow advertisers for consumers’ attention. Proper targeting to reach your specific audience is a huge help to ensure a consumer is interested in seeing your ad, but we’ll touch more on that later. When creating your ads, finding ways to stand out from the crowd is imperative. This can be done in one of two ways: 

  1. Unique creative message or imagery. While this may be easier said than done, with a skilled team of creative experts, hitting the mark with the proper tone, message, or imagery can captivate your audience.
  2. Unique creative formats: If you don’t have a punchy or creative brand but still want a unique ad experience, consider special creative formats within video ad buys to stand out. Thanks to technological improvements, advertisers have many innovative ad formats and techniques that will help catch consumers’ eyes. Consider one of the following unique formats: 
    • High Impact Units: Through our partnerships, we can leverage custom units across CTV to allow your target audience to interact with your brand. Sample Units: Quiz, Branded Skin, 3D tour
    • QR Code: Consider adding a QR code to your CTV creative to allow users to drive action, such as signing up for your newsletter, filling out a form, or sending them to a map to find the nearest store.

2. Does the ad format match your goal?

2022: Answer, in Summary

Skippable ads may be the best investment if you’re looking to drive conversions. Non-skippable ads are better used to boost credibility, brand awareness, or product awareness, not encourage click-throughs.  

2023: Revisit

Our advice stands. When brainstorming and creating video ads, always remember your goal. Clicks and completes have an inverse relationship: a person who clicks on the video isn’t going to watch it all the way through, and a person who does watch it through likely won’t be able to click on it.

3. Are you only looking at the completion rate?

2022: Answer, in Summary

Remember, A high completion rate does not necessarily equal a successful campaign. Campaigns must be measured by their overall value to the entire marketing strategy, not by their completion rate.

2023: Revisit

Again, this tip remains relevant for 2023 consumer and advertising goals. 

Additionally, as the time consumers spend consuming video content increases, remember the different devices they may be watching on and how that affects the action they take when watching your ad. For example, if they are watching social videos on their phone, they are more likely to click through your ad to learn more, whereas if they are watching on their TV, they’ll likely just watch through. 

While most advertisers invest in blended buys across devices, these tips are essential to remember as you strategize different formats and messaging based on your ad’s placement. 

4. Do you have a strong digital strategy?

2022: Answer, in Summary

No matter your choice, your ad is more likely to be viewed, engaged with, clicked on, or whatever other goals you have if you have proper audience targeting in place. Consider how you can use contextual targeting and sequential messaging to drive home your brand messaging.

2023: Revisit

More valid words have never been said. In all sincerity, it is essential to have proper targeting in place because, as mentioned above, consumers are savvier than ever. This means they will only pay attention when an ad is relevant or interesting. Selecting a precise cross-channel mix of targeting and retargeting tactics will ensure you’re reaching your audience where they are in their customer journey. Learn more about specific targeting tactics to implement here

The Time to Invest in Video is Now

No matter your choice – skippable or non-skippable – advertisers should start putting some of their budgets toward video content. After all, that’s where the consumers are spending time. 

Digilant offers a robust Advanced TV solution spanning nearly every device or platform consumers watch. Are you interested in learning more or reviewing video-centric solutions based on your target audience and goals? We’re eager to build you a plan. Contact us here. 

How to Maximize the Value of Your Advertising Platforms

The current economic climate has created stressors across almost every industry in one way or another — a domino effect that ultimately leads to decreased budgets across all marketing efforts. A recent survey found that 7 in 10 advertisers are negatively impacted by inflation rates and supply chain disruptions, while 49% have reduced or completely paused their advertising budgets.

 

In 2023, it’s safe to say many advertisers will be tasked with doing more with fewer resources. As such, it’s more important than ever to:

  1. create strategies built on digital advertising ROI
  2. Evaluate and rethink the most effective advertising platforms for your brand.

Rethink and Reevaluate Your Strategy

 

The most important thing to avoid in an economic downturn is going dark. After all, every challenging time can lead to positive outcomes if you aim to be open-minded, agile, and consistent.

 

With this in mind, you should consider how resources might be changing — reduced channels for campaigns, decreased production for ad creativity and content produced, etc. Thinking of these hand in hand will help to resolve any lingering inefficiencies in processes and serve as the starting point to create a new strategy that will produce more impact with fewer resources.

 

The goal for 2023 is to continue to drive conversions, which means advertisers must be innovative and work to understand consumer behavior better, preserve brand recognition, lean into brand loyalty, prioritize consumer needs, maintain timely messaging (if possible), and remain visible during these economic times.

 

Lean into Data

 

As an advertiser, two of the most significant advantages you have today are access to data and access to consumers. There is an ample amount of data available to drive decisions no matter the economic climate, but in tough times, having reliable data is crucial for being able to make fast, strategic decisions.

 

Besides having access to data, the first step toward making strategic decisions is knowing how to leverage the data. Digital advertising ROI and customer acquisition costs (CAC) are overarching metrics to focus on that will highlight earned vs. spent dollars, as well as how much money has to be spent to obtain a customer. In general, you should look to these numbers as a guiding point. Decreases in these metrics are a result of smarter tactics and targeting within campaigns.

 

No matter the metric, you should also consider shifting away from quantity to cost efficiency. For example, rather than just noting the total number of unique visitors in web traffic, analyze where visitors are coming from (referral, social media, organic, paid search, email, etc.) and redirect efforts based on that knowledge. Similarly, if web analytics reflect a high bounce rate, that could indicate that your landing page needs to be optimized and/or the optimal target audience isn’t being reached.

 

Invest in the Right Platforms

 

As you consider what metrics your brand will focus on to ensure results, it will come time to decide which platforms you’ll invest advertising dollars in. Unfortunately, in a time when you want to be careful with your money and efforts, there is no “best” platform for advertising. Instead, the right platforms will be determined by your brand’s goals and your target audience. Wherever your audience spends time and interacts with your brand will help you make further informed decisions regarding advertising on the right platforms.

 

With this in mind, it is also important to note that the answer is probably not singular. You’ll need to invest across a few channels, as consumers don’t spend their day siloed within one device or platform. Connecting these platforms and initiatives is important for getting the most bang for your buck.

 

In today’s omnichannel environment, the most effective advertising strategies ensure all platforms work together. Having a strong, always-on, data-driven strategy can help you place efforts toward numerous channels that present valuable opportunities.

 

• CTV: Connected TV usage is at an all-time high as more consumers turn to streamimg platforms than cable.

 

• Social media: Consumers not only spend the most time on social media, but they also shop, research, and make buying decisions on social media channels — making social a preferred platform for advertising efforts.

 

• Digital audio: This has historically been one of the best platforms for higher ROI.

 

• Influencer marketing: Consumers are more hesitant to spend their money during economic uncertainty, but they trust word-of-mouth recommendations and suggestions from influencers.

 

• Performance marketing: It all comes back to data — the more first-party data you can build and amass during these times, the better your advertising campaigns will be in the future.

 

• Analytics: While not a platform, strong analytics programs are essential during this time to understand what is and is not working.

 

Boost Your Digital Advertising ROI With Digilant

 

During times of economic uncertainty, you must be innovative with the basics of advertising. Analyze where consumers are spending their time, determine how to meet them on those platforms efficiently, and, maybe most importantly, create a message that adds value to their buying journey during uncertain times.

 

Remember, data is more than numbers. Data maps out intention and purpose within consumer journeys, as well as inefficiencies and gaps in advertising tactics and strategy. If you can analyze beyond the numbers, you can implement the most efficient campaigns that reach your ideal audience.

 

Connect with our team at Digilant for more insight on building the best advertising strategy that meets your brand’s specific goals.

How to Get Started With Paid Social Media Advertising

U.S. adults spend an average of 13 hours and 11 minutes with some form of media daily. With numbers like these, it’s easy to see that consumers are constantly connected. Whether it holds their entire focus or is in the background while they multitask, in one way or another, people are constantly consuming content. And while consumers often engage with multiple devices throughout the day, smartphones continue to be the most popular way to stay connected.

What does all of this mean for advertisers? Over the next five years, the overall portion of social media in marketing budgets is estimated to increase to 24.5%.

Fortunately, this isn’t breaking news; data has been highlighting this consumer behavior for years, and many advertisers have already shifted their efforts to keep up with trends. However, as consumers become more and more connected, it is important that you not only allocate more of your advertising budget to paid social media, but also know how to run a paid social media campaign that will generate a positive impact for your brand.

Understanding Consumers’ Wants and Needs

The best chance of actually connecting with consumers is to understand their core motivations: They want authentic, personalized content that’s tailored to their interests, and they want it on their schedule.

Consumers are no longer willing to simply consume content that’s presented to them with no forethought. Instead, they choose what they want to consume. Rather than flipping through TV channels searching for something to watch, they log in and stream exactly what they want to see. Instead of listening to the radio, they search for and listen to their favorite artist or podcaster. Social media is no different — consumers will spend time browsing apps of their choice to curate the most personalized experience that fits their interests.

These facts can make the chances of reaching consumers — or, more specifically, your optimal target audience — seem hopeless. However, consumers knowing what they want and where to get it only serves as a benefit to brands because advertisers can now know exactly what consumers want. As such, advertisers can deliver on just that.

While you might now have abundant data to understand your audience, social media is an oversaturated environment riddled with competing brands. As such, it is crucial to understand social media campaign best practices to be both authentic and cost-effective.

Paid Social Strategy: The Basics

Your brand’s ability to be agile can help spur authenticity. Navigating how to be authentic on social media can be tricky, but it is helpful to have the ability to create content that resonates with consumers at any given moment.

Social media can no longer be a throw-away channel for leftover display and video ads just so your brand can have a presence. Instead, successful paid social media campaigns involve exploring unique strategies, creatives, and resources.

A paid social media strategy that works for your brand will have the ability to:

  • Switch out creatives often.
  • Make offers timely and relevant.
  • Target consumers with ads that fall into their position in the customer journey.
  • Keep consumers at the center of ads and tactics.
  • Be flexible and take risks.
  • Be consistent and authentic.
  • Meet consumers where they are by testing new channels.

What’s Next?

Social media offers a multitude of options, which can make it confusing when determining where to start. Fortunately, there are a few tips to help you simplify the process:

1. Budget accordingly.

The cost of implementing a social media campaign will vary based on your goal, industry, overall budget, and other factors. However, “The CMO Survey” from February 2021 provides some insight into the percentage of marketing budgets that businesses will spend on social media over the next 12 months:

  • B2B product: 14.7%.
  • B2B services: 18.3%.
  • B2C product: 21.8%.
  • B2C services: 18.7%.

With this in mind, it is important to note that budget is more than just the cost of ads. Content creation (including images, videos, voiceovers, talent, production costs, graphic design, copywriting, etc.), software tools (including editing, media management, project management customer service, etc.), and training are all costs that need to be factored in when deciding which platforms to spend money on.

2. Determine the right platform for your brand.

When first delving into paid social media, understand the potential reach of each platform. While it is important not to shy away from testing new platforms, when starting, it can be beneficial to focus on one platform where your targeted audience already is. This can help you make the best connections and get the most out of ad spend right out of the gate.

3. Set attainable goals.

Determining goals first will make drafting campaigns, producing creative, and tracking benchmarks easier when moving through a paid social media journey. Take time to consider what your brand hopes to achieve and how that fits into the overall paid social campaign strategy.

4. Research successful campaigns.

Look into what other brands are doing well, what consumers resonate with, and how those things could fit in future campaigns. Major retailers are always a good source of inspiration, but looking through local campaigns and smaller businesses can provide inspiration that suits a more specific audience.

Now Is the Time to Begin Your Paid Social Campaign Strategy

The most important thing to remember when creating a paid social campaign strategy is to keep it flexible. Creating a strategy that involves long processes and limited social channels will cause even the best creative to be overlooked or irrelevant by the time a campaign is launched.

You must be prepared to move as quickly as the world of social media does, including refreshing creative efforts often and pivoting channels when the opportunity presents itself. Doing so will set your advertising strategies up for success and ensure your brand remains relevant across various platforms.

Want more insight on breaking into the world of effective paid social media advertising campaigns? Connect with the Digilant team to learn how we can help meet your brand’s specific needs.

How to Retarget Your Audience the Right Way

When advertisers say, “Consumers are everywhere,” it’s for good reason. A study from Deloitte found that the average U.S. household uses 22 connected devices (TVs, smartphones, smart speakers, laptops, tablets, etc.). It’s clear that consumers are accessing content from a variety of platforms and devices as they move throughout their day.

However, today’s media consumption is also quite fragmented. Laptop and desktop usage has evolved into mobile and connected devices that span every aspect of life. In the oversaturated environment of fast-paced TikTok videos and Instagram Reels, consumers are getting pickier — and savvier — about where they spend their time. As users prioritize platforms and channels that fit their preferences and create seamless experiences, advertisers must be aware of these preferences and reach their target audiences in ways that resonate.

When comparing 2011 to 2021, overall media consumption is up 20%, time spent on mobile is up 460%, and time on desktop is up 25%. Cable TV and radio, on the other hand, have seen a 24% and 19% dip, respectively. The biggest lesson from these changes is that consumers will no longer consume content that is presented to them without context. Instead, they will proactively select the content they want to consume. Consumers want personalized experiences on their terms, unique content that mirrors their interests, and content that’s delivered in their preferred formats.

In Practice: Why Influencer Marketing Can Boost Your Advertising Efforts

When establishing a digital advertising campaigns, remember that today’s consumers know what they want from their media consumption experience, and they know where to get it. This mentality is a huge benefit for brands. If your ad hits the mark, it will most likely be viewed, interacted with, clicked on, or even shared. But on the flip side, if it isn’t what the consumer is interested in, it will be skipped over. Worse, it might not even be seen.

The growth of influencer marketers is a fantastic indication of how content consumption has transformed and how advertisers can adapt to the changing times. Consumers engage with and follow influencers because they are interested in their lifestyle or “brand.” These influencers can then partner with brands that match their lifestyle or image and consequently draw consumers to the branded products.

This is still a valuable marketing tactic that brands can use, as consumers — especially younger ones — often interact with promoted brands when influencers and celebrities post their ads on social media. Consumers are willing to buy these products and services because they feel authentic. But even influencer marketing isn’t foolproof. The minute the brand feels inauthentic or oversaturated, consumers are no longer interested.

How to Engage Your Audience with an Effective Retargeting Campaign

With all this in mind, it’s clear to see why retargeting your advertising campaigns can be beneficial for business. Retargeting is agreat way to keep your brand top of mind for your target audience while also creating customized experiences based on consumers’ past activities.

The following are four strategies to help you successfully retarget your advertising campaigns and get your brand back on track:

1.Realize that retargeting is not one-size-fits-all.

The key to an effective retargeting campaign is to be precise about who you are retargeting and what message you are sending them. A retargeting campaign is an excellent opportunity to create a touchpoint specifically built based on the customer’s previous behavior.

For the best results, consider the following:

  • What products did the consumer look at or interact with, and how can you showcase those again?
  • What stage of the buyer’s journey are they at, and how can your messaging move them further?
  • Which consumers are highly valued, and how can you prioritize specific touchpoints?
  • Which customers have recently made a purchase?
  • How can we continue to interact with consumers without being annoying?

While you cannot develop a unique retargeting campaign for each customer, you can start to think about segmenting your groups based on audience data, behaviors, and actions. This process will help create a more personalized experience in your subsequent social media advertising campaigns.

2. Consider the entire ad experience.

Evaluate the entire ad experience based on different categories, especially the landing page your ad has taken consumers to. If someone is still top-funnel, it might be too early to drive them to a specific product page.

Here is a simple chart to help you determine where each level of the advertising experience should correspond:

  • Upper funnel = Homepage
  • Midfunnel = Product category page
  • Low funnel = Specific product page

The closer the consumer is to making a purchase decision, the more detailed information you should be giving them. Don’t be afraid to test different messaging, calls to action, or channels to get their attention.

3. Be strategic with your budget.

From website engagement data, you can bid higher on ads targeted toward different audience segments, such as frequency of site visits, recency of site visits, stage in the buyer’s journey, people who viewed a specific product or page, and repeat customers.

Some consumers will provide your brand with more value than others. Think about this in terms of where you place your budget and who you prioritize. For example, you should focus on consumers most likely to convert first before moving to those in other parts of the advertising funnel.

4. Implement proper frequency caps.

Retargeting campaigns run a fine line between being strategic and timely vs. annoying and overbearing. To prevent the latter, you must implement frequency caps or burn pixels to stop targeting specific consumers once they have seen your ad for a certain amount of time or taken a specific action. This is especially important in today’s environment in which you’re running ads across different channels and platforms.

A connected omnichannel digital advertising partner will ensure your frequency caps are connected across all your channels. This small detail creates a better customer experience and helps you strategically allocate your advertising budget.

Ready to Reach Your Target Audience?

As consumers diversify their media habits, you must have a strong analytics-based omnichannel approach to avoid wasted media spending. Without a system tied back to a single source, you run into oversaturation, missed opportunities, and other issues that lead to a less-than-ideal customer experience.

In an environment where consumers have the power to be as picky with brands as they wish, make sure your advertising efforts are working smarter, not harder.

If you’re ready to create more effective retargeting ad campaigns and reach your target audience, Digilant is here to help. Contact our team today or download “The New Media Playbook for Advertisers.”

Move Over Google, There’s a New Search Engine in Town

Google has long reigned as the king of search engines. With more than 8.5 billion searches a day, it’s no surprise that when in need of information, the common vernacular is to literally say, ‘Google it.’ 

So, with this historical dominance in the industry, what company can shift this trend and give Google a run for its money? 

TikTok. 

While you may have thought this short-form video platform had reached its headline quota after news covering its metric rise of popularity, securing the title for the fastest-growing social platform of all time, or the back and forth about whether it would be shut down in the US. But, TikTok’s dominance in the industry hasn’t slowed down, and therefore neither have the headlines.

Introducing TikTok: The Search Engine

The platform rose to popularity as a social platform used to discover, interact and post short-form videos (many with the hopes of going viral). Now touting over 100 million monthly active users in the US, experts have recently noticed a pattern that shifts the platform’s primary use. 

Rather than strictly for entertainment purposes, users, especially younger generations, now use the app as a search engine. In fact, 40% of Gen Z searchers turn to TikTok or Instagram before performing a traditional Google Search (source).

So why the switch in behavior? The amount of time people spend on the app naturally lends itself to this new use. The average TikTok user spends 45,8 minutes (source) on the app every day. However, there are also four features unique to TikTok that keep Gen Z coming back and searching more. 

4 Reasons Users Turn to TikTok for Searches

1. The Algorithm 

When asked why people enjoy the app beyond its sheer entertainment value, the overwhelming response is its precise algorithm. Maybe you’ve even heard a friend say, “my algorithm knows me so well.” TikTok is touted as having one of the best algorithms to find personalized, curated content explicitly based on your preferences and interests. 

Users started and grew their time using the app because of the curated videos served to them based on their interests. Now, they know they can use that same benefit when seeking information. They are confident the search results will fulfill not only their curiosity but will align with their preferences. 

2. Personalization

In light of Gen Z’s preference toward influencers and user-generated content, the answers provided on TikTok seem more authentic coming from a fellow user rather than a faceless, impersonal website. 

3. Today’s Consumers are Video-First

It’s been on-trend for years, but consumers overwhelmingly prefer video content to any other format. And when it comes to recommendations, short clips of a dining experience showcasing the different food, drinks, atmosphere, and live reaction to the taste are sure to peek your interest more than the written word or even static imagery. In the current environment, the battle of text vs. video always ends with video on top.

4. Less Bias 

As mentioned above, today’s consumers, are wearier of ads and vague recommendations. They are looking for sources beyond websites and blogs strickly optimized for Google. TikTok allows them to scroll through different videos and source their own information. They can also browse comment sections, see what other users think, verify which recommendations seem legit, and confirm if it fits their needs. 

The Drawbacks

With any information searched and consumed online, there is a risk of misinformation and biased results. TikTok takes this up a level because of its walled garden platform.  Consumers aren’t moving away from the app; therefore, they aren’t going to alternative sites to verify or double-check the information they receive.

TikTok’s Response

As TikTok recognizes this new consumer behavior on its platform, they have leaned into its new reputation as a venue for finding information. As such, they are testing features to combat misinformation and also encourage users to do more research on topics. For example: 

  • It is currently testing a feature that identifies keywords in the comment section and links to search results for them.  
  • In Southeast Asia, it is also testing a feed with local content so that people can find businesses and events near them.

Google’s response to the recent changes

Google hasn’t publicly spoken out, recognizing that there’s a new competitor in town. However, recent changes to their search experience indicate they know they can’t rest on their laurels. When searching on google, you’ll now notice a variety of different media, including: 

  • Text
  • Video
  • Images
  • TikTok video
  • YouTube Shorts: vertical videos less than a minute long

Additionally, individuals within the organization have commented that it’s on the company’s radar. In July, a Google senior vice president, Prabhakar Raghavan, stated: 

“In our studies, something like almost 40 percent of young people, when they’re looking for a place for lunch, they don’t go to Google Maps or Search. They go to TikTok or Instagram.”

What Does this mean for advertisers? 

In an environment where advertisers have long relied on Google as the cornerstone of their paid search efforts, many may question whether they should reconsider their strategy. The short answer is there is no need to abandon Google and move all investments toward TikTok. Google still has tremendous power as a search engine. 

However, this change in consumer behavior is a good reminder and indication that regular refinements to your digital advertising strategy are essential. So if it’s been a while since you’ve thought about how your strategy stacks up in today’s environment, here’s your sign to regroup. 

Consider how you can TikTok to interact with and engage consumers. 

TikTok Strategies for Advertisers

Organic Efforts

While it may seem overwhelming due to the endless creativity that seeps out of TikTok, jumping into the platform with an organic presence is a good place to start. Remember you started from scratch on other platforms like Instagram and Twitter, built a following, learned what works and doesn’t, and refined your strategy. The same can be done on TikTok.

As mentioned, younger generations love organic content, so creating authentic videos showcasing your products and services while maybe incorporating a trend of two will go a long with today’s consumers. An always-on, regular cadence of content also puts your brand in a great position to pop up in those organic searches that app users make everyday. 

Paid Efforts

Once you have a solid organic strategy, consider investing in paid efforts. There are unique creative opportunities for brands to get their content in front of consumers, including: 

Additionally, the platform offers a suite of audience targeting solutions to ensure you’re ad is reaching the right audience, such as:

  • Demographic (Gender, Age, Geographic, Language)
  • Internet Operation (Mobile OS, Internet Access)
  • Interests (Examples: Anime, Auto, Pets, Food, Funny, Games, Lifestyle, Entertainment, military, Films & TV, Song & Dance, Society, Sports, Technology)
  • Custom Audience: add audience, exclude an audience, replace audience
  • Lookalike Audiences

Ready to incorporate TikTok into your digital advertising strategy? 

At Digilant, we help brands to eliminate channel siloes and inefficiencies with Advanced Social solutions across all social platforms, including TikTok. Learn more about key features of our solutions, including fluid budgets, transparent fee structure, and holistic reporting with superior customer service here

And contact us here if you’re ready to build a digital advertising solution targeted for today’s modern consumer. 

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