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OTT device users are an attractive audience, reports FreeWheel in its inaugural “Signature Insights” study [download page]. The research looks specifically at over-the-top (OTT) devices, which have grown to exceed all other devices in premium digital video ad view share.

Earlier this year, the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) reported that almost half of US adults own an OTT device such as a smart TV or streaming device. That figure may have risen, judging by recent Nielsen data showing that multimedia devices and enabled smart TVs are each owned by more than one-third of US households.

The most popular of these devices – or at least the most commonly used for premium digital video – appear to be attached devices such as Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku and Amazon Fire TV. (Of these, Roku is easily the leader in market share.)

In analyzing the clients that represented more than 95% of OTT-driven digital ad views during Q1, FreeWheel found that attached devices accounted for 84% of premium digital ad views, while gaming consoles comprised 11% of ad views and smart TVs the remaining 5%.

OTT Device Users’ Age Profile

The OTT audience presents a more appealing one to advertisers than the traditional TV audience, argues FreeWheel. In its analysis of Nielsen data, FreeWheel discovered that the median age of an OTT device viewer was 31, compared to 54 for traditional TV. (More on traditional TV viewing trends by age group here.)

OTT device users also sport median incomes that are almost $10,000 higher than their traditional TV viewing counterparts ($61,200 and $51,500, respectively).

Discover the demographic composition of a host of major media audiences in our premium report!

All told, more than three-quarters of the OTT audience sits within the 18-49 demo, according to FreeWheel’s analysis of entertainment networks on its platform. That includes a majority (56%) of ad impressions served to Millennials (18-34), with another 27% to Gen Xers (35-54).

Finally, OTT device users are the most likely to complete ads: 98% of ads viewed on OTT devices were completed in Q1, compared to 91% on tablets, 86% on smartphones and 84% on desktops.

FreeWheel attributes this to the “full-screen, lean-back experience that OTT enables” which resembles traditional TV viewing. As the authors state, “OTT provides the advantages of digital advertising in a highly engaged, linear TV-like experience. It truly combines the best of both worlds.”

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