Linear Disruption: Adapting Strategies from the 2024 TV ‘Fronts Season
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Linear Disruption: Adapting Strategies from the 2024 TV ‘Fronts Season

Linear, by definition, refers to a single dimension or straight line. Any marketer navigating the TV ecosystem knows that is the farthest thing from our current reality. While Linear TV has historically led the pack, with other video tactics “filling in” the gaps, today’s landscape requires a holistic approach – and this year’s ‘Fronts lineup is proving just that.  

Change at every corner 

Shifts in viewer behaviors and advancements in technology that enable real-time optimizations require a reassessment of the traditional upfront model and its impact on overall business success. 

Consumers’ access to content is more expansive than ever before. We now have a dynamic makeup of content delivery methods, data sets, and measurement alternatives—a web of possibilities instead of a one-size-fits-all approach. We’re seeing these truths play out more and more during the 2024 ‘Fronts season with cross channel content and representation.  

How we’re navigating for our clients 

1. We are buying Linear TV in a variety of ways to best deliver against client goals 

While a general demo-based approach suits certain advertisers, Addressable, Data-Driven, and Programmatic strategies have enabled brands to enhance their TV marketing efforts within a crowded competitive environment, leading to more meaningful business outcomes. 

This is especially critical in industries like healthcare, which is overrun with broad demo-based buying. Not only does more targeted Linear TV provide a better user experience, but it also delivers a strong return on investment. 

2. We’re thinking of Video as a holistic channel to overcome viewership fragmentation 

The convergence from traditional to streaming has required us to consider both simultaneously to deliver on clients’ objectives and results. No longer can video tactics be planned in silos, as has been the case for many agencies in recent history. This needed change can be seen in the structure of publisher teams as well – with more and more deals being made as a bundle, or streaming giants like Prime Video and YouTube winning long-term exclusive rights to high profile sports broadcasts like Thursday Night Football.  

3. We’re balancing investment to ensure pull-through from brand awareness to audience action. 

Despite the fragmentation in the space, video continues to be one of the strongest drivers of brand awareness. But, for its impact to pull-through to action, we need to think across channels. If video investments are high, there should be complementary targeting strategies pulled through in display, search, and social to continue to move the audience towards action. We have also seen success in some of the more custom, innovative video spots that allow for direct action to be taken through engagement with the spot (e.g., QR Codes, Pause Ads, Branded Skin). 

TV is not dead; if anything, it is now reborn into a more dynamic and interconnected landscape. The future promises a more flexible, accountable, and personalized TV advertising experience. 

As you navigate the 2024 ’Fronts season, if you have any questions or want to learn more about Butler/Till’s process, don’t hesitate to reach out to our Video experts.  

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