The rise of streaming services has disrupted traditional television advertising, but it has also presented opportunities for linear TV to diversify its revenue streams and grow. With more focus on how companies can diversify their advertising strategies across new media services, platforms and apps, there is a major emphasis on advertising in streaming and modern media. However, traditional broadcast television networks can leverage their strengths in creative opportunities, data analytics, and live events to maximize advertising revenue in the digital age.
One solution for broadcasters to remain profitable and relevant in a rapidly changing media landscape is to monetize their digital streams while primarily focusing on advertising in the broadcast. Research has shown that creative quality is one of the most significant drivers of advertising effectiveness, with creative factors accounting for a big percentage of a campaign’s impact. By leveraging their strengths in creative and data analytics, traditional television networks can diversify their revenue streams and remain competitive in the ever-changing media landscape.
They can also leverage data and analytics to identify the most effective creative strategies and channels for reaching specific audiences. For instance, local television stations across the U.S. can offer targeted advertising opportunities to businesses in specific regions, such as hotels and quick-service restaurants, supermarkets, and retailers, feeding into a collective frame of reference that greatly benefits brands. By tailoring and nurturing the collective broadcast experience, traditional television networks can provide a counter to the “disconnection from place” that can come with streaming platforms. One of the major social trends over the last few years has been a greater desire to connect with local communities and subcultures, which linear TV can help cultivate.
Live events provide another opportunity for traditional broadcast television networks to attract advertisers and viewers from across the country and the world. The Super Bowl is a prime example of how a television broadcaster can capitalize on live events to reach millions of viewers at once as part of a wider cultural event. With the entire event hosted in 2023 by Fox, the broadcaster was able to charge up to a reported $7 million for a 30-second advert. For events like the Super Bowl, broadcasters can offer exclusive access to live matches, interviews with players and coaches, and expert analysis and commentary, creating a high-impact, real-time advertising opportunity for advertisers. A similar opportunity is seen, and take full advantage of, by advertisers globally during the World Cup.
Defined as viewers aged 55 or older, silver streamers on average make up 10% to 15% of countries’ populations worldwide. By 2030, seniors are projected to spend just under $15 trillion, up from $8.7 trillion in 2020. Silver streamers are already driving streaming’s growth in the U.S., and as viewers in Asian, Latin American, and African economies age, they are likely to drive future growth for connected TV (CTV) advertising globally.
Creating ads that draw in wealthier silver streamers might be a matter of survival for global brands, especially as fledgling consumers across the world brace for layoffs and scrutinize their budgets. The best way of building brands is broad reach, increasing mental and physical availability for more customers across all demographics. Brands that aim to be inclusive and bring in older consumers are likely to have a better chance of succeeding than those that focus narrowly on youth or try to reach a niche segment.
Older viewers might be more used to ads than younger generations, making them particularly interested in ad-funded plans. Having grown up in a world where advertisements were ubiquitous, silver streamers recognize that there exists a compromise between accessing free content and being exposed to advertising. However, younger viewers who have grown up in the age of ad-free streaming services may be less willing to tolerate ads and may prefer to pay a subscription fee to avoid them. This is why many streaming platforms offer both ad-supported and ad-free plans to cater to different audiences.
Overall, linear TV can still offer a unique and valuable advertising opportunity for brands, especially when it comes to live events and local advertising. However, in order to remain relevant and competitive in the digital age, it is important for linear TV networks to leverage their strengths in creative opportunities and data analytics to maximize advertising revenue.
But it’s not just about competing with streaming services. As mentioned earlier, silver streamers are a growing demographic with significant spending power. This means that linear TV networks should also consider targeting this audience in their advertising strategies. In fact, as we discussed earlier, older viewers are already driving streaming’s growth in the US and are likely to drive future growth for connected TV advertising globally. This presents a significant opportunity for linear TV networks to diversify their revenue streams and increase their advertising effectiveness.
This might mean featuring older actors and actresses, using nostalgic themes, or focusing on family-oriented storylines. Additionally, linear TV networks should consider partnering with brands that are popular among older consumers, such as health and wellness brands or financial services companies.
Furthermore, linear TV networks should also take advantage of the wealth of data available to them. By utilizing data analytics, networks can gain valuable insights into their viewers’ preferences and behavior, allowing them to tailor their advertising strategies accordingly. For example, data may show that older viewers are more likely to watch certain programs or tune in at certain times of day, which can inform the placement and timing of ads.
In conclusion, while linear TV may face challenges from streaming services, it still offers unique opportunities for advertisers, especially when it comes to live events and local advertising. By leveraging their strengths in creative opportunities and data analytics, and targeting the growing silver streamer demographic, linear TV networks can remain competitive and increase their advertising effectiveness in the digital age.
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