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Bet on Better Reach and Measurement with CTV This March Madness

March Madness CTV - Blog

The top college basketball teams come together in March for a postseason tournament that’s like catnip for hoops fans. Brackets (and betting apps) are filled out, arenas are packed and millions tune in — including many who otherwise don’t watch basketball. There’s a reason it’s referred to as “madness.”

For advertisers, the month can be a bonanza for brand awareness. 2023 saw $1.2 billion in ad revenue, breaking the previous record set in 2022 by 8%. 

Yet, many marketers perceive that working in today’s fragmented TV space is complicated. And it makes sense. The rise of streaming over the past decade — and especially during the COVID -19 pandemic — changed the way and where consumers view content. 

This is increasingly true in the world of sports. 

Long seen as linear’s final holdout against the streaming takeover of television, sports broadcasts are increasingly moving to Connected TV (CTV). Big names in the streaming ecosystem, including Disney+ (which owns ESPN and Hulu) and Warner Brothers – Discovery, have invested their resources  to obtain the streaming rights to NBA, NHL and MLB games, including highly-watched playoffs. 

Amazon too, which streams NFL’s “Thursday Night Football (TNF),” is even changing U.S. internet habits. As Comcast president Mike Cavanagh noted this past December, “TNF moved peak data usage from Sunday to Thursday night.” 

How CTV Streaming Can Streamline Potential Wins for Marketers This March

One reason advertisers relied on linear television was reach. Think of it this way: A campaign for a new product, such as a watch, could reach millions of viewers tuned in to a prime-time show. However, linear TV advertising for tentpole sports events remains competitive, spendy and difficult to measure. 

Streaming, while lower in reach than linear, offers increased targeting and measurement. (Psst: This CTV inventory often has a lower cost than linear, too.)

Revisiting our watch example for a streaming campaign, a brand could use available data to ensure their campaign reached target audiences with a high potential to buy the watch. By working with a people-based technology partner, like Viant, advertisers can use available measurement tools to tie their CTV to the purchase of the watch, including if it happened in-store. 

And it’s worth noting that notable brands have big plans for their CTV advertising this March Madness. Take Pizza Hut for example, which is aiming its nostalgia-filled campaign at Gen Z audiences interested in the 90s.

Reach Target Basketball Viewers This March with Viant Audiences

For advertisers looking to reach target basketball audiences during March, Viant Audiences is the perfect solution.

Viant Audiences offer people-based (i.e., without third-party cookies) audience segments with contextual-based, predictive, TV viewership and location data for geotargeting. These segments can be layered onto a campaign or tailored to unlock actionable audience insights and drive informed decisions. 

Further, Viant Audiences also offer innovative machine-learning predictive segments, which are custom-built from brands’ first-party KPIs such as online or offline conversions, foot traffic, in-store CPG purchases and more. 

All month long, advertisers with access to Viant’s DSP can use Viant Audiences* to reach basketball fans watching the game and purchasing tickets, team jerseys and other merchandise. So, don’t miss your opportunity to activate Viant Audiences today.

Reach out to an account representative to hear more or get started with Viant. 

*Additional costs will apply for use of Viant Audiences.  Please reach out to your account representative for additional details.


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