Advanced Television

FreeWheel: Premium video views up 22% YoY

September 27, 2018

FreeWheel, a Comcast company and advertising management solution, has launched its Q2 2018 Video Monetisation Report (VMR), which shows continued growth in premium video, thanks to major events such as the FIFA World Cup, and the way broadcasters are increasingly collaborating to create a more data-enabled future for TV advertising.

In Europe, despite the arrival of new data regulations with the GDPR, premium content saw an increase of 31 per cent in ad views and 22 per cent in video views during the second quarter of the year, compared with the same period in 2017. In contrast, digital programmatic spending took a big hit immediately post-GDPR, with exchanges reporting anything between a 25 and 40 per cent reduction in demand .

‘Big screen’ viewing on TV sets captured almost a third (30 per cent) of all ad views during the period. This may be partly attributed to the screening of the World Cup over the summer – still the most watched TV event globally – as fans sought the best quality viewing experience to watch the spectacle.

Data from the VMR indicates three key trends across Europe between April and June this year:

  • Premium video continued to flourish across all devices and platforms. STB and OTT saw year-over-year growth of 21 per cent and 41 per cent respectively, while mobile ad views grew by 46 per cent compared to 2017
  • As streaming services continue to grow in popularity, broadcasters are reacting to the competition. Sky is building Netflix into its premium service, while others are collaborating – the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and network operator Arqiva are joining forces to invest in the Freeview platform, to offer combined free-to-view, live and on demand television
  • Direct-sold deals still dominate the market, accounting for 88 per cent of premium video ads sold in Q2 – up 41 per cent year-over-year

Additional findings from the Q2 report included:

  • Operator-driven syndication grew strongly this quarter, now accounting for 17 per cent of ad views, as publishers strive to provide consumers with content whenever and wherever they want it
  • Premium video continues to be an engaging format for viewers, as ad completion rates remained high in Q2, with pre-roll completion at 91 per cent for both live and full episode, and mid-roll completion rates at 94 per cent for live and 96 per cent for full episode.

Thomas Bremond, General Manager, International, Comcast, commented: “As the convergence of linear and digital capabilities continues, premium video is perfectly placed to own a greater portion of the marketing funnel. Success will depend on the industry enhancing targeting and measurement capabilities, while still providing a brand-safe environment and engaging user experience.”


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