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Cinema First drives incremental reach with Connected TV

Image of Cinnema First with a family of two adults and two kids in a cinema room

Cinema First drives incremental reach with Connected TV

Bringing crowds back to cinemas


Incremental reach with OTT Connected TV vs BVOD


Completition rate


Cost per completed view

As cinemas began to reopen after months of Covid-19 lockdown, Cinema First — the industry body charged with promoting UK cinema-going — wanted to launch #LoveCinema, a nationwide campaign designed to remind audiences across the country of the unique experience that only the big screen can offer.

Cinema First worked with their media agency, MediaCom, to design a digital strategy that would drive higher video engagement in premium content environments. The media would be activated on popular platforms across audience interests relating to film, TV, and streaming content in order to drive awareness while ensuring the ads were reaching relevant audiences.

Reaching new audiences with Connected TV (CTV)

The teams at MediaCom and The Trade Desk collaborated on a strategy that focused on premium Connected TV (CTV) content. Ad-funded over-the-top (OTT) platforms allowed Cinema First to contextually target Hollywood movie titles and channels that indexed highly for film and entertainment fans. This CTV approach also complemented Cinema First’s other streaming strategies, including broadcast video-on-demand (BVOD).

Another goal was to demonstrate the incremental reach of CTV. Cinema First did this by partnering with Beatgrid, a measurement platform that monitors cross-media audiences at scale. This helped the company prove their CTV campaigns were reaching audiences who hadn’t yet been exposed to their ads via BVOD and other streaming channels, such as YouTube.

Identifying high-value audiences and premium publishers

MediaCom and The Trade Desk — along with our OTT platform partners — were able to create a robust campaign strategy that targeted Cinema First’s desired audience segments:

  • 16- to 24-year-old film and entertainment fans.
  • 25- to 34-year-old film and entertainment fans.
  • Families with parents over 35 years old.

MediaCom chose Rakuten, Roku, Samsung TV Plus, and Pluto as their OTT publishers for the campaign. It was agreed that the ads would only run on CTV devices, and budgets would be kept fluid to ensure flexibility.

Both our team at Beatgrid and The Trade Desk worked together to upload the ad-based video creative into our cross-media analytics platform.

Image of the Cinema First Case Study Chart

This allowed Beatgrid’s automatic content recognition technology to measure reach and incrementality calculated via their mobile panel and normalized using national statistics data to ensure a representative data set.

As the campaign objective was to raise awareness, Cinema First chose to optimize towards consideration metrics, such as video completion rate (VCR) and cost per completed view (CPCV). Post-campaign, the most important KPI was incremental reach gained from the campaign’s other video channels, including BVOD.

Through our platform, the MediaCom team was able to quickly and efficiently prioritize ad spend towards the best performing OTT providers.

Doubling incremental real over BVOD and other streaming

Careful planning, configuration, and optimisation all contributed to making the campaign a resounding success.

  • 100% increase in incremental reach via CTV (588k people).
  • 87% VCR.
  • £0.03 CPCV.
  • Three impressions per person on average throughout the campaign.


Most impressive were the incremental reach results. Beatgrid and The Trade Desk were able to demonstrate how OTT ad-funded video on demand (AVOD) platforms can significantly extend audience reach beyond BVOD. As a next step, the teams are planning to run an AVOD campaign with Beatgrid to measure incremental reach over linear TV.

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