6 Reasons Why Advertising on Streaming Platforms is Crushing Traditional Television

A Research conducted in 2018 found that 78% of households still watch traditional TV. Looking at the statistics, you probably won’t think that TV viewing is on the decline. But it is, and along with it, the TV ad spend is declining as well. For years TV advertising was considered the pinnacle of marketing and businesses who would afford it found themselves having a competitive advantage than their competitors. The TV was the only medium through which brands could reach a wide market. However, today, with the advent of streaming technology and the rise of streaming services, advertising on TV is shifting to streaming platforms. 

Why is streaming advertising becoming more popular?

The advancements in technology have changed the way millennials consume media and entertainment, making it tough for television to compete with the streaming world. As more people are choosing to cut cords, OTT offers a highly engaged audience to brands and acts as a great medium to drive performance. The move to streaming advertising will be a boon to brands in the form of addressable TV advertising which facilitates real-time targeting of audiences for much better measurements and performance tracking when compared to traditional TV advertising. 

While traditional TV metrics were based on large sample size, OTT VOD streaming advertising offers far more transparency to people who are watching the content. Not only will brands be able to learn who is watching, but they will also be able to know what they are watching, and when they are watching it, and on what devices they view programming regularly. Further, customers also like the ability to choose what they like to see. This leads to a better sense of engagement and allows your messages to reach the audience much better. 

Here are some of the reasons that contribute to the rising popularity of streaming advertising and why it is preferred over TV advertising. 

Better reach

A couple of years ago, streaming could not have boasted of a broad reach as one of its major strengths. However, today it has developed in such a way that there would be over 197.7 million monthly OTT users by 2022 in the U.S alone. Moreover, opportunities for advertising brands to reach their audience with streaming advertising has expanded beyond the connected TV screens. 

Advertisers now have a plethora of options to reach the audience right where they are viewing. From desktops to smartphones, there is no shortage of ways to bring forth your brand in front of your potential audience. Not just reaching a broad audience via a variety of screens, brands also get the opportunity to reach out in unique ways. For example, you can reach your potential customers through interactive ads that deliver an immersive brand experience to viewers.

A more engaging audience

There is no doubt that the major benefit of streaming advertising is its ability to engage with a younger and more engaging audience. This study shows that there was a 40% drop in traditional TV consumption in 2017 among the 18-24year old audience. As you read this blog in 2020, the number would have declined even more. Whereas, streaming platforms are successful in engaging a younger audience and they are receptive to OTT advertising. As video streaming platforms have matured, brands are moving towards creating a video streaming website as viewers are skipping traditional cable TV in favor of OTT platforms. Over 98% of the audience complete the entire ad they view on streaming platforms. This clearly shows that streaming advertising has the power to captivate the attention of the audience in the most natural way. 

Strong targeting

This is one of the major strengths of OTT VOD streaming advertising. As an advertiser, you can choose specific topics, geographies, and demographics to advertise your products and services. As this is not achievable in traditional advertising, it is definitely an upgrade. 

Additionally, there are a variety of streaming services to choose from like entertainment, sports, etc. which makes it further easier for you to target the right audience. For example, a brand selling sports products can particularly choose a popular sports streaming platform to reach that set of audience. Unlike TV advertising where brands advertise directly to all audiences (those who are interested and those who aren’t), streaming advertising gives you the opportunity to reach the audience who would be interested in watching your ads making it easy to improve your ROI. 

Powerful analytics

At the end of the ad campaign, it is important to understand the performance of the advertisement you are leveraging to reach out to your potential customers. However, TV advertising doesn’t offer many opportunities to analyze the results of campaigns. However, streaming platforms provide accurate data analysis to analyze the performance. 

It is easy to retrieve real-time viewership statistics, geography, device types, channels, and a lot more. With the data about your customers and their viewing behavior, it is easy to understand which content strategy and ad types work for you the better. It also opens up opportunities for you to optimize the ad campaigns that need improvement. 

Smooth transition from TV advertising to streaming advertising

For advertising brands hesitant about embracing streaming advertising, the latter offers a smooth transition. This is because much of the programming is carried over from traditional TV media like the formatting. When and where the expected commercial break is positioned to remain the same in streaming advertising as well. Streaming advertising provides you with the opportunities to choose whether to run must-watch, non-skippable, or skippable advertisements to reach your target market in the best possible way. Hence, your brand gains the advertising benefits of utilizing both the viewable and highly engaging TV commercial ads and the data-oriented targeting of the streaming space. 

Flexible budgeting

While a wide reach and right targeting are important, the ultimate goals for any business are to minimize the expenses and maximize the ROI. Unlike TV advertising that costs you a fortune for a single ad, OTT provides room for flexible budgeting as it is easy to track the number of views and targeting. For example, if you want to target a specific audience, a limited number of impressions can be brought for a small fee with minimum cost but maximum efficiency. 

The future of streaming advertising

Streaming advertising has a bright future despite some challenges. Most streaming services receive the major share of their revenue from subscriptions the users are paying for. This is great as advertisers will know the detailed information about users, their location, etc. so that they can tailor their marketing strategies and offerings much better. 

The viewability of advertisements on streaming platforms will increase as the content offered to these users will better suit the products and services they are interested in. Although streaming advertising already offers plenty of opportunities, it will definitely provide even more in the future as technology continues to evolve. Embracing this new technology and leveraging it to the fullest potential will prove to be beneficial for brands as there is nothing more engaging and immersive for the audience than on demand entertainment. 


Traditional cable TV still reaches millions of audiences. However, with the increasing trend of cord-cutting, limitations of targeting options, and high cost of advertisements, TV advertisers will see more restrictions on the effects of their marketing campaigns. With this rising trend, streaming platforms are evolving as a primary advertising channel. For advertisers, it is now critical to dive in and take a more targeted approach to reach the audience group.

OTT advertising is more customer-centric and your brand message will resonate with the right target audience, making it more of a personal experience than random TV ads that might not even reach the right audience. Considering the technology’s contribution to the streaming industry, OTT VOD advertising will present the most lucrative opportunities for brands. 

Amanda Smith is a marketing consultant at StreamHash, a company that provides the one-stop solution for live streaming business. I am expertise in strategies to engage customers and improve business opportunities. Interested in marketing communications and like to keep abreast of new trends and development.

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