What You Need to Know About Measuring Success in CTV


As Connected TV & OTT disrupts the way we view broadcast and new forms of video programming, advertisers are eagerly looking to establish effective methods for targeting those coveted potential consumers and measuring the impact of their efforts.

How to Measure Success in CTV Advertising

In the past, ad rates (and the effectiveness of those ads) were essentially set on a case-by-case basis, usually dictated by the viewership of the content in question. If 18 million people were regularly and reliably tuning into Show A, ad rates would naturally be higher than those of Show B airing at the same time but only pulling in half as many viewers.

Today marketers have turned towards foot traffic and real-world actions their audience take as the metric for measuring ROI. 

Because you knew thanks to traditional TV or digital viewership metrics like those provided by Nielsen how many people were watching, you also knew how many people your brand was exposed to – thus creating a mutually beneficial situation that worked well for many years.

How do you accurately measure CTV ads in terms of effectiveness? What are the key metrics in CTV? Should something be judged separately just because it pulled it fewer initial viewers, even though it may have pulled in more viewers overall?

There are still people out there who are trying to change this new concept of connected TV advertising to have it make sense with the way things used to work. It’s completely understandable – but it’s also something those people will want to reconsider.

The myopic marketer sees this shift as a disruption in the worst possible way, trying to hand onto that broadcasting mindset of advertising for dear life. The savvy marketer, on the other hand, sees this new performance mindset as the opportunity it really is – one that actually gives them access to more data and insight than ever before, all of which can be used to make their campaigns better, stronger and more effective in the future.

Connected TV KPIs That Matter: Your Goals and Strategy Must Always Influence Your Metrics

Therefore, if you truly want to measure the effectiveness of your ads in the modern era, you need to embrace a data-driven approach in the new world of opportunity modern content consumption brings with it. 

CTV Tech Landscape is a fragmented one. Hence measuring and tracking data can be a little tricky. There’s no cookie tracking or flash support in Connected TV Advertising, and not a lot of publishers allow for 3rd party data integrations. This is manual and not a straightforward endeavor to accomplish. 

And there is no one size fits all approach. 

Based on your strategy, you will need to decide on the amount and type of data you would want to utilize. Typically working with data vendors to procure consumer data and geo-intelligence.

Key Performance Indicators for streaming TV needs to be looked from a different lens than linear TV. Along those lines, there are a few KPIs in CTV that you’ll want to keep a careful eye on. These include ones like:

Completion Rates

Completion Rate is a metric that tells you how many times the advertisement was fully shown/ viewed. Instead of just tracking the number of people who were exposed to an ad, this shows you how many people actually FINISHED it – thus giving you more insight into how much of your message someone was exposed to.

Viewability Scores.

This is a measure of whether or not an ad had a chance to be seen by a user, giving marketers a better idea of how many times their ads are actually appearing in front of their audience members. Viewability scores are measured differently by different platforms. Typically the viewability of an ad is considered if it is watched for a few seconds and shows up on more than 50 percent of the screen space. Generally, this metric is showing proportionality with screen sizes, larger the screens the higher the viewability scores are. This is where CTV outshines regular OTT, where ads on TVs usually had a higher score than ads on mobile and desktops, re-enforcing the captivity of the audience.

Cost Per Completed View over CPM

If there’s one number that the Advertising industry is obsessed with. It’s CPMs. It is a rudimentary metric that shouldn’t be the primary metrics to base your buying decision upon. However, in reality, that’s not the case. And it’s important to point out CPM is a metric that tells the cost of thousand impressions and not necessarily viewable impressions or 1000 unique views. You should rather look at the Cost Per Completed View which is more meaningful for the success of your campaign.

Cost Per Completed View =  Total Campaign Spend / Total Number of Completed Views 

Cost Per Walk-in

For automotive this translates to the cost per registered showroom visit. This is calculated based on the total ad spend divided by the number of people to whom the ad was shown and had actually visited the showroom. This may be hard to calculate with CTV. Unlike digital where there’s flash support, and cookie tracking, attribution capabilities with CTV alone is not a possibility. However by using cross-device and network data you could instrument a multi-touch attribution tracking to identify how non-clickable ads led to web activity, and actual store walk-ins.

All of these metrics and measurement tools out there give advertisers a tremendous amount of data points to make well-informed decisions to better optimize their ad campaigns and get the maximum out of their ad spend. With these metrics at your reach and the capability to adjust things as you go, you have infinite ways to gather intelligence. Instrumenting data based on your strategy and goals is fundamental. Matching device ids, and IP to target households, combining that with 3rd party data to better target, and implement a mechanism to attribute walk-ins to your ads are valuable.

You need to select your KPIs in CTV very carefully, based on exactly what campaign you’re trying to run.

If you’re simply trying to raise awareness, for example, something like completion rate is worth paying attention to. The insight generated may be too broad to help you accomplish other goals, however, which is why you need to start with your strategy and work your way back to the KPIs and not the other way around.

In the end, Connected TV Advertising is a perfect opportunity for brands to not only reach an elusive and fractured audience but to do so in the most focused and forward-thinking way possible. But simply engaging in Connected TV Marketing isn’t enough to get the job done. You need to know exactly what you should be paying attention to so that you can find out what works and, more critically, what doesn’t. Newcomers can end up maxing out their budgets and not look at frequency capping or other tactics to maximize their return. 

Having been one of the early adopters of this particular medium of Advertising, we at Demand Local have furnished KPIs for several National Automotive Agencies that work with us. Having hands-on experience with Connected TV very early on, we along with our Media and Technology partners have seen a track record of implementing some of the most successful CTV campaigns for the agencies we work with and their clients. Realizing the meteoric rise of Connected TV and the facts around it clearly indicating a hockey stick growth in recent years, it is only wise to adopt CTV Advertising as early as possible.

Get a free consultation from us. Talk to us and find out more about the different metrics that you should be tracking.

CTV Ad Tech Landscape

Written by

Demand Local

Demand Local empowers Automotive Advertising & Marketing Agencies to Scale and Grow their Businesses. Our Digital Ad Infrastructure was built from the ground-up specifically to serve the Automotive Sector by unifying our proprietary technology with some of the industry’s leading media and technology services. Demand Local is a pioneer in adopting newer media, and technologies to better bridge the gap between advertisers and buyers.

Ready to drive traffic? Talk to us.