Amplifi & Video Innovation Council

thought leadership

2020 will be the year when holistic video is no longer an aspirational strategy for brands, rather a reality. The harmonization of all consumer touchpoints between TV, social video, digital video, cinema and OOH video will be imperative. Marketers will reach the inflection point to focus on audiences, not the medium or channel, and will strive to target and measure audience impressions across all video platforms to deliver better business outcomes.

1. Consolidation and Expansion of Scale Will Continue

To achieve scale and long-term viability, consolidation will accelerate after a very acquisitive year in 2019. M&A activities could be in the form of content + content, content + distribution, as well as cross-platform distribution. Legacy content owners may seek new digital content production capabilities or distribution outlets, whereas platforms will chase new acquisition targets to boost original content offerings. With an expanded scale, media owners will increasingly push for a more diversified cross-platform video portfolio.  

2. Connected TV is the Ultimate Winner of the Streaming Wars

2020 will reach the peak of the streaming wars once the long-anticipated HBO Max and NBCU’s Peacock finally launch. While it’s still early days to predict winners and losers, there is no doubt that Connected TV has mainstreamed into a primary viewing mode of how Americans consume video content. Time spent on streaming video will continue to rise, leading to an exponential growth of CTV ad avails and marketplace standardization.

3. Fragmentation Will Lead to Reaggregation

Increased fragmentation in consumers’ viewing experience across services, devices and platforms will lead to two forms of reaggregation. At the consumer level, viewing and content fragmentation will exacerbate discovery fatigue, leading to a resurgence of bundled content services such as vMVPDs. At the marketer level, complexity of managing overlapping and fragmented supply sources will motivate marketers to reduce and streamline inventory aggregators to a few trusted partners.

4. Race for Consumer Attention Drives Video Innovation

In a world where consumer attention has become an increasingly rare commodity, marketers, media owners and tech providers will continue to innovate new creative formats and video assets to capture attention. Key experimentation in 2020 will center around interactivity on both linear and digital platforms, shoppability, personalized sequential messaging across platforms, and continued pivot to short-form digital video by legacy players.

5. Context Regains Importance in a New Privacy Environment

Contextual targeting and storytelling will take on brand-new importance as consumer privacy regulations and protection measures take full effect in 2020. With audiences being the north star, contextual targeting approaches will evolve to become more nuanced and sophisticated, ranging from traditional genres and keywords to emotional attributes and psychological need states.

6. Content is the New Advertising in a “Post-advertising World”

The value proposition of content integration will become more prominent in 2020. Given the growth in ad-free streaming video subscription, cord cutting, and ad blocking, delivering brand messages and building consumer connections will be taking on new and more creative forms through branded content partnership and sponsorship across video platforms and content assets within a media owner’s portfolio.

7. Linear TV Marketplace Remains Robust Despite Inventory Contraction

Linear TV supply will continue to decline due to the ongoing time-shifting and platform-shifting of video viewing and cord-cutting. However, the linear TV marketplace will continue its momentum in 2020 with historic moments such as the U.S. presidential election and Summer Olympics in Tokyo. Similarly, live events such as entertainment tentpoles and sporting events will continue to be sought after moments. Demand is likely to outpace supply as both legacy TV advertisers and new entrants from DTC brands and tech giants commit investment to TV.

8. Video Addressability, Especially on the National Scale, is Front and Center

Media owners, distributors and technology providers are coming together towards the same goal of making every video impression addressable. New identity-based solutions will layer additional personification to video impressions that allow for more relevant and precise targeting. The primary focus rests on unlocking national live linear inventory with a number of industry initiatives scheduled to launch in 2020.

9. Automation is the New Battle Ground for Linear TV

The advancement of new data sources in addition to identity and analytics solutions will further push automation and data into linear TV workflow, from audience building, planning to buying. As programmatic mainstreams in social and digital video buying, linear TV becomes be the next battleground for media owners and advertising technology vendors. They are poised to vie for market-leading positions in audience targeting, workflow streamlining, in-flight optimization, and cross-platform measurement.

10. New Currencies Loom as Accountability Becomes Table Stakes

Marketers’ relentless pursuit for accountability will demand more proof points and make every dollar count. ROI and business outcomes will become table stakes given the growing adoption of attribution. While legacy media delivery metrics remain the primary form of currency, there are opportunities to expand the currency to strategic audiences and business outcomes across platforms. Multiple transactional models and currencies can exist and be optimized to balance marketers’ delicate need between efficiency and effectiveness.

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