Gaming consoles increasingly vital for connected TV viewership, brand advertising

According to recent reports, video gaming consoles are still one of the most popular ways for consumers to connect to the internet via a television screen.

Posted on Dec 6, 2012 by YuMe

While video gaming consoles are no longer the big ticket holiday shopping item they once were, the systems are still one of the most popular ways for consumers to connect to the internet via a television screen.

Earlier this month, Netflix announced that its application – which YuMe reported in August was one of the most popular connected TV apps – was most frequently accessed from the Sony Playstation 3 gaming console, CNET reported.

"PS3 is our largest TV-connected platform in terms of Netflix viewing, and this year, at times, even surpassed the PC in hours of Netflix enjoyment to become our number one platform overall," said Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, according to CNET. "PS3 is a natural fit for Netflix in terms of developing and first deploying our most advanced features. We can transparently update our application with new features on a daily basis."

Among all of the internet connected devices available for television screens, it should come as no surprise to video advertisers that the PS3 video game system is the most popular one for accessing Netflix. The Playstation 3 is one of three gaming consoles to make FierceCable's November list of the top 10 connected TV interfaces, and YuMe reported earlier this year that 77 percent of American households with an internet-enabled television set have connectivity through a gaming console. The study, conducted by Frank N. Magid Associates, also found that 28 percent of smart TV owners can only get online from a TV screen via a video game device, which is more than the number of consumers connecting with a set-top streaming device.

Why video game-based connected TV viewership matters to brands
Among the myriad of internet video advertising opportunities available to companies, connected television may be one of the most fruitful avenues, as reports from YuMe and others have shown that smart TV viewers are among the most receptive consumers of advertising.

The August YuMe study found that approximately 70 percent of connected TV viewers interact with ads in some fashion, and about 19 percent of users will purchase a product or service after watching a spot via an internet-enabled TV.

"This study confirms that connected TV represents a tremendous advertising opportunity for brands looking to generate consumer awareness and meaningful interactions," the YuMe report said. "The growth of short-form video content and consumers’ willingness to view advertising that pays for the content is creating this burgeoning opportunity. For longer-form content, the study helps validate opportunities for ad units such as YuMe's First Impression, which enables brands to engage with their target audience in an uncluttered environment. Advertisers need to move fast in order to capture this highly engaged and attentive audience, and first movers will undoubtedly realize the biggest benefits."

In addition, a November study conducted by market research firm Parks Associates found that about 58 percent of connected TV consumers said that ads on the platform are effective, and more than 80 percent of those polled indicated that they thought more immersive connected TV-based ads were an ideal way to learn more about a brand or product.

While a majority of U.S. TV viewers do not yet own a connected television, that is likely to change soon. The November report predicted that about 87 million North American households will have a connected TV by 2016, which is why video ad executive Jeff Siegel wrote in a December 5 ADOTAS article that now is the right time for brands to start advertising on internet-enabled TVs.

"Brand advertisers that proactively develop strategies leveraging the emerging connected platforms will discover immense opportunities to engage with viewers and immerse them in a one-of-a-kind brand experience," Siegel wrote.