Embracing Disruptive Tech: Insights for Marketers from CES

Back to Blog - by Wesley Farris

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) brings together professionals from various industries to gain insights into the rapidly evolving world of consumer electronics. As these technologies revolutionize consumer behavior, marketers and advertisers must adapt in step. During the conference, industry leaders shared their strategies for leveraging disruptive technologies to enhance customer journeys and create top-tier advertising experiences.

Wesley Farris, VP of Platform Partnerships at Digilant, attended the conference and recently sat down with us to provide his key takeaways from the event. Let’s dive in.

The Demand for Supply-Side Transparency and Premium Curation

Throughout the conference, there was an emphasis on the growing need to refine the sell-side process of digital advertising. As key industry players prioritize ways to make media buying more direct, transparent, and higher quality, there’s a call to eliminate the number of parties involved in media buys. This is shaking out in a few different scenarios.

First, to eliminate some of the hoops media buyers currently jump through, supply-side platforms (SSPs) are prioritizing the integration of buy-side technologies.

For leading SSPs such as FreeWheel and Magnite, one of their focuses is on supply path optimization (SPO). SPO creates a more efficient process of media buying, reducing complicated paths to supply and providing advertisers with more transparency in their ad placements and overall spend.

Additionally, many SSPs are actively seeking more ways to leverage top-tier data companies and first party publisher data (that the SSPs have access to) that enable enhanced targeting and measurement capabilities. OpenX, for instance, has layered Oracle data in its platform, providing media buyers with high-quality data alongside a direct path to transparent inventory.

How SPO Benefits Advertisers

A key focus on transparency and optimization always nets a better experience for both brands and consumers. These shifts specifically provide advertisers with the following benefits and improvements in the ad-buying experience.

  • Transparency in Ad Placements: Enhanced ad transparency helps advertisers understand how their spend is utilized and further evaluate the quality of their ad placement. Transparency is crucial to avoiding ad fraud and ensuring that ads are not placed on inappropriate or irrelevant sites.
  • Access to Premium Inventory: With a deeper focus on curation, advertisers can gain access to premium ad inventory that might not be available through other channels. This allows for more strategic ad placements in high-quality environments.
  •  Improved Ad Performance and ROI: Supply-side optimization and data integrations use algorithms and analytics to place ads more effectively, ensuring that they reach the right audience at the right time. This increases the likelihood of user engagement and conversion, leading to better returns on investment (ROI).

Data-driven customer experiences sit center stage as advertisers work to create both privacy-compliant and targeted experiences for shoppers. The new changes and partnerships outlined above pave the way for advertisers to have more control over data and its implementation to create optimal media buys.

Connected TV (CTV) Takes Center Stage in a Cookieless Landscape

CTV (Connected TV) has been a major focus in the industry for several years, particularly as many consumers have shifted from cable subscriptions to streaming services. However, a key aspect of CTV’s appeal, especially highlighted during CES, lies in its inherently cookieless environment. This becomes increasingly relevant in light of Google’s phasing out of third-party cookies.

CTV users are authenticated when logging into either their device or a streaming platform. This authentication opens up several opportunities for advertisers, including access to enhanced targeting capabilities, the use of first-party data within various platforms and devices, and improved measurement solutions. Throughout the conference, we gathered three especially notable CTV developments that can help give advertisers the upper hand as they explore this cookie-free medium.

Rise of FAST channels

Free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) represents a significant segment of authenticated viewership. Platforms such as Pluto and Tubi are gaining traction due to their broad audience reach and robust measurement capabilities. Considering the high penetration of smart TVs in U.S. households, 77% to be exact, advertisers shouldn’t ignore the power and reach available through FAST channels.

Digital audio advertising via smart TVs

Recent insights from CES indicate a substantial proportion of consumers using smart TVs exclusively for audio streaming. This trend highlights the growing interconnectedness of the digital ecosystem across different devices and platforms. For advertisers without video assets, digital audio advertising presents a compelling way to reach CTV users.

The shift of live sports to digital platforms

Live sports are progressively moving away from traditional cable to digital platforms. While broadcast TV was previously the golden channel for advertising during sports events, changing consumer habits are altering this landscape. Amazon Prime, for example, is now the exclusive broadcaster of Thursday Night Football, bringing football fans to their platform in order to tune in. Advertisers need to adapt to these changes by preparing for digital ad placements to effectively target and engage sports fans.

Embracing Digital Advertising’s Evolving Landscape

Insights from CES emphasize the need for advertisers’ adaptability in the dynamic digital landscape. A focus on supply curation, transparency, data-driven strategies, and the rise of CTV all underscore the importance of harnessing new technologies and platforms to create optimal campaign impact and stay ahead.

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