Together with Effectv

“In our industry, the only constant is change. But with the right insights—you can be ready for what’s next,” said James Rooke, President, Comcast Advertising.

The 2023 Comcast Advertising Report was designed to help simplify the complexity that buyers and sellers are facing today as TV viewing continues to shift. This second annual report analyzes data insights across Comcast Advertising; in addition to viewership data insights from Effectv’s TV Viewership Report, it includes platform insights from FreeWheel –  Comcast’s advertising technology platform – to offer a unique perspective into TV advertising on all screens.

What’s included:

How viewers are viewing – Viewers still prefer the big screen: Households still spend nearly 6 hours per day watching traditional TV, and 82% of streaming viewing happens on a TV screen.

How buyers are buying – Buyers are combining streaming, sports, addressable and data-driven linear to maximize reach.

How sellers are selling – Sellers are incorporating customer data, with 87% of marketers using first-party data.

And More – 5 Topics on the Mind of Buyers, What’s Working for TV Advertisers, 5 Predictions on What’s Next.

Download a copy of the report today to learn more and understand what these insights mean for the modern multiscreen TV advertiser.


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Effectv Sponsored Content

Advertisers today face many difficult choices. In-house or agency? Manual or automated? First-party data or third-party data?

New data reveals the ideal balance of linear TV and streaming advertising to achieve maximum campaign reach.

One of the most challenging choices is how to make the most of video advertising – that is, how to balance traditional linear TV with streaming. New data uncovers the importance of incorporating both strategies into an effective media plan, as well as the right budget allocation to drive the best results.

The reality is that many beliefs about TV and streaming are simply myths and proven false when diving into the numbers. Regardless of your stance on TV versus streaming, reading this data from a recent TV Viewership Report published by Effectv may change the way you plan your next video advertising campaign.

In an analysis of over 20,000 campaigns from the second half of 2021, we found that advertisers who employ both streaming and TV see the best success, regardless of spend level or brand category. More specifically, campaign reach is highest when 20-30% of a campaign investment is allocated to streaming.

Adding streaming to a TV campaign or adding TV to a streaming campaign drives additional reach among unexposed audiences, proving it is a valuable combination. In fact, 37% of streaming impressions went to “light” or “no TV” households – in other words, households that most likely would not have otherwise seen the ad or would have only seen it sporadically on TV.

If you think TV and streaming serve different audiences…consider this.

Despite this compelling evidence that TV and streaming work best together, myths and misinformation are holding some advertisers back. And, although both TV ad spending and Streaming ad spending are expected to grow this year, there are still advertisers who feel strongly that one is “better” than the other. TV traditionalists believe that streaming ads are reaching only young people on a tiny screen, and that nearly all streaming is ad-free. On the other hand, streaming mavericks believe TV is past its heyday, or that no one is watching traditional linear channels in today’s on-demand world.

And if you worry that only young people are watching streaming, it turns out mom and dad are watching, too. According to a new study of streaming households, adults over 35 spend more time with streaming video than those under 35.

If you think TV is no longer relevant…consider this

TV continues to be one of the most effective ways to reach large audiences of all ages. In fact, in the second half of 2021, viewers spent an average of more than 6 hours per day watching TV, with 88% of time spent with live TV. And, while it’s true that “cord cutters” do exist in the U.S., 70% of households that watch streaming also subscribe to cable. In fact, among households that watch streaming, 61% of their viewing time is spent with cable or broadcast TV.

All of this means that TV is still an important reach vehicle for advertisers. Here’s why: According to an analysis of over 20,000 multiplatform ad campaigns with at least 40% of the spend allocated to streaming, TV exclusively accounted for two-thirds of the total campaign reach – proving that TV is still the best way to reach a large audience in a short amount of time.

If you think streaming isn’t effective…consider this

“Streaming viewing has grown 266% over the past three years, completely transforming the entertainment, publishing and advertising industries,” said Keith Zubchevich, CEO, Conviva.

Some advertisers worry that streaming ads are too often watched on mobile phones or tablets on the go, where it might be difficult to capture the viewer’s attention. The reality is that streaming via a connected device offers the same lean-back experience as traditional TV, with 76% of streaming impressions seen on the TV screen.

“Advertisers must constantly evaluate their approach to TV advertising, including adjusting schedules based on new viewership trends, changing creative to align to the current environment, and using always-on performance metrics and KPIs”, said Matt Cox, director of sales for Southern Virginia at Effectv. “Our team continuously optimizes campaigns to align with the advertiser’s objectives wherever and however the audience consumes their video content.”

Finally, it’s not just about paid subscriptions with no commercial availability! You may be surprised to learn that over half of all streaming time is spent with ad-supported content. Sounds like a pretty good bet for advertisers.

With all of this in mind, when asked the question of whether your next advertising campaign should include linear TV or streaming, the answer should be yes.

Want to learn more?

Download a recent report, A Powerful Duo: The Linear + Streaming Evolution.

Matt Cox is the director of sales for Southern Virginia at Effectv, the advertising sales division of Comcast. Effectv helps local, regional and national advertisers grow their business with multi-screen marketing solutions and is a proud AMA Richmond sponsor.

With Google Analytics 4 (GA4) replacing Universal Analytics on July 1 next year, marketers need to start preparing now to take advantage of new features and avoid losing important historical data. Fortunately you can install and run GA4 alongside Universal Analytics during the transition period. Setting up GA4 is the easy part – the bigger challenge is setting expectations and encouraging adoption within your marketing team and senior stakeholders.

GA4 is the next generation of web analytics and improves our ability to measure the entire online customer journey. The evolution is so dramatic that the tracking code and reports are incompatible with Universal Analytics. The playing field becomes level as all marketers are starting over with a blank slate and zero historical data in the GA4 platform. Companies that are slow to implement GA4 and adapt their analytics practices risk falling behind more progressive competitors.

The migration to GA4 requires more than a simple update to the tracking code on our websites. Your migration will be much smoother if you plan ahead with an organized, thoughtful approach to implementation. 

Get familiar with the new features in GA4

Let’s address the elephant in the room. GA4 looks and acts very differently from Universal Analytics and many people don’t fully understand it when they first log in. That’s normal with new software and a little research can help you hit the ground running. Here are some of the biggest changes you can expect to find in GA4:

  1. GA4 uses cookies but is built for privacy. This “under the hood” change is significant and helps ensure GA4 provides valuable, anonymized data even as browsers, operating systems, and individual users become more privacy-focused. Machine learning helps fill in the gaps with predicted results when cookies aren’t available.
  2. GA4 is built on events, not pageviews. Every interaction, including pageviews, is recorded as an event. This gives marketers more flexibility to measure sequences of interactions that don’t necessarily generate new pageviews.
  3. GA4 has built-in machine learning to surface insights. Humans aren’t great at processing huge amounts of data and spotting patterns in streams of data, but computers are. GA4 automatically highlights trends and anomalies to allow marketers to act more decisively.
  4. GA4 has more robust reporting capabilities. With new reports added regularly, GA4 gives marketers the ability to analyze their website and campaign data with tools that were previously only available in the paid version of GA360.

Plan a stress-free migration before flipping the switch 

Since GA4 and UA don’t allow for apples-to-apples comparisons, marketers must take a fresh look at their analysis and reporting needs. You’ll want to consider each of these areas before building out your GA4 implementation:

  1. Tracking Setup: Your success with GA4 starts with a successful implementation of the tracking code, so it’s important to consider who will manage the changes to your website and how to implement, publish, and QA them properly.
  2. Data Collection: You need intuitive and actionable data about your digital campaigns and website performance to determine the success of your marketing efforts. Consider your organization’s data needs and wants with a measurement model that ladders up to your higher-level business goals.
  3. Historical Data: Universal Analytics will stop recording new sessions on July 1, 2023. Historical data will be deleted from Google Analytics six months later. Plan ahead to ensure you can compare your future GA4 data to historical performance.
  4. Reporting: Great analytics programs are about more than just gathering data. Empowering your teams with data-driven insights can accelerate your digital marketing performance. Spend time thinking about the outputs of your GA4 migration and start dreaming up new ideas.

We created a downloadable GA4 Migration Planner that walks you through each of these steps with examples and questions to guide your implementation plan.

Add GA4 tracking code to your web properties 

Once you have a migration plan in place, it’s time to add the tracking code to your website, mobile app, and any other properties you want to measure. This step is important to get right so you can continue to collect data seamlessly during the transition period. 

The most common method to add the code directly to your website or use a tag manager such as Google Tag Manager. You should start seeing real time data in your GA4 property within a few minutes.

The data won’t match your Universal Analytics data perfectly due to the differences in tracking methodologies but the general trends should correlate fairly closely. 

Keep an eye on website traffic and conversions over the next few months 

Most marketers will continue to report out of Universal Analytics while GA4 accumulates data. You should monitor GA4 data for accuracy while building out your conversion tracking capabilities and creating new reports. 

You’ll have time to adjust your setup if you notice any large discrepancies in your data. This is also a great time to train your team and reset expectations about future reporting and analysis options. You can prepare your team by reminding them that GA4’s benefits ultimately outweigh the costs of switching and the eventual loss of historical data.

Don’t wait until July 2023 to begin customizing your GA4 setup!

We’re learning more about GA4 daily and new features are launching almost weekly. We should anticipate more changes between now and July 2023 when Universal Analytics officially goes away. 

During the transition, remember that you’ve had years to get your Universal Analytics reporting tuned to your needs. Don’t expect GA4 to be perfect right away. Updating reports and analyzing data is quick and easy once you get familiar with the new tools.


Written by: Andrew Miller, Workshop Digital