Why Taking an 'Online Video First' Approach is Best for TV Advertisers

The recent launch of London Live by the owners of the Evening Standard is another example of how TV is becoming an ever more accessible advertising media.If successful, London Live will offer a substantial audience of 20 and 30-somethings living within the M25 - attractive to many premium and luxury advertisers. If more niche channels launch offering similarly attractive audiences, you can see TV evolving from the a blunt-edged tool to something much more rapier-like.And it's not just new channels that are driving this trend to more precision targeting in TV. Take Sky AdSmart, which launched last Summer. Delivered via Sky's 7m Sky+ boxes, AdSmart currently allows advertisers to target their ads based on demographic information supplied by Sky+ households. In time, we're sure those targeting options will get more sophisticated - adding a layer of behavioural data and perhaps 3rd party profiling data too. Not only that, but the plethora of smart set top boxes from the likes of Google, BT/Talk Talk, Apple and most recently Amazon will broaden the available market for this more precisely targeted TV advertising.Given these trends, should premium and luxury marketers be seriously considering investing in TV? The answer is 'yes' but we'd argue they should first be considering investing in online video and here's why.Online video is growing in popularity amongst our clients for a number of reasons. Firstly, the moving image is the most effective way to showcase premium products. Secondly, as more premium inventory has been added to the market, question marks about the suitability of environments has receded. And finally, the precise targeting that online video can offer is particularly attractive to premium and luxury brands.Targeting options now include demographic, geographic and behavioural, and even targeting by career seniority. And anonymized transactional data from the likes of Mastercard or VISA might become available in the not too distant future too.But it's not just about targeting data, but the data available on performance, whether that be viewability, dwell rates, dwell times or data from our clients' own sites such as traffic quality and conversions. We'd argue that it's this performance data which makes launching an online video campaign make sense before taking your first steps into the world of TV.By taking an 'online video' first approach, you can quickly and cheaply test your video content to ensure you have something which resonates with your audience - something you can't do in the slow turnaround, metric poor environment of TV. Then, once you've studied your metrics and made the necessary adjustments so your content is optimised, you can scale up - distributing it via earned channels and launching it on TV.At a time all marketers are challenged to prove that very pound spent is delivering a return, the test and learn approach is becoming ever more prevalent. One area this hasn't been applied to yet is TV advertising but using online video first represents a prime opportunity to avoid wasting thousands on a campaign that could have been made to work much harder if tested in the online environment first.