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How Is CTV Different Than TV?

Connected TV (CTV) refers to television sets that can connect to the internet and stream content from a variety of sources, such as Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, and other streaming platforms. This is different from traditional television, which relies on over-the-air broadcasts, cable, or satellite providers to deliver programming.

As video consumption continues to shift from traditional TV to streaming platforms, advertisers need to understand the differences between Connected TV (CTV) and traditional TV in order to effectively reach and engage audiences. In this blog post, we'll explore the key differences between CTV and TV advertising, including delivery methods, targeting, ad formats, measurement, and future growth.

Delivery Methods

One major difference between CTV and traditional TV is the way that content is delivered. With traditional TV, viewers are limited to the programming that is broadcast over the air or provided by a cable or satellite provider. With CTV, viewers have access to a wider variety of programming options, including shows and movies from streaming platforms, as well as other online content such as social media and web-based applications.


Another major difference is the level of interactivity that CTV offers. Many CTV devices, such as smart TVs and streaming devices, come with built-in apps and interfaces that allow viewers to easily navigate and access content. In contrast, traditional TV often requires viewers to use a separate remote control or menu system to access different channels or programming options.

Targeting and Personalization

CTV also provides a more personalized viewing experience. With the ability to create profiles and customize recommendations, CTV users are able to easily find content that they enjoy, rather than being limited to the programming that is broadcast on traditional TV. In addition, many CTV devices allow for multiple users to have their own profile on a single device, allowing for different users to have personalized recommendations and content to watch.

The different level of  targeting and personalization of CTV allows advertisers to use data and analytics to target specific demographics, interests, and behaviors. This means that ads can be more precisely targeted and more likely to be seen by the right people. Additionally, CTV platforms often offer interactive and personalized ad experiences, such as clickable overlays, that can increase engagement and conversions.

Ad Formats

CTV also offers a wider range of ad formats than traditional TV. In addition to traditional 30-second commercials, CTV platforms allow for longer form content, such as branded content and product placement, that can be more engaging and effective in driving conversions. CTV also provides more opportunities for programmatic advertising, which allows advertisers to automate the buying, placement, and optimization of ads.

Measurement and Accountability

Another difference between CTV and TV is the level of measurement and accountability that can be achieved. CTV platforms provide advertisers with a wealth of data and analytics on their ad campaigns, including metrics such as viewability, completion rate, and click-through rate. This allows advertisers to track and optimize their campaigns in real-time, and make adjustments as needed to improve performance.

Cost of CTV

The cost of CTV may be different from traditional TV depending on the region and service providers. In some areas, streaming services may be cheaper than traditional cable or satellite TV packages, but in other areas, traditional TV may be cheaper or the only option. Additionally, the cost of a CTV device, such as a smart TV or streaming device, may be an initial investment that needs to be made.

Future Growth

CTV is an ever-growing platform that is expected to grow even more in the future, as more and more people are cutting the cord and moving away from traditional cable or satellite TV. As the CTV audience continues to grow, it will become an increasingly important platform for advertisers looking to reach and engage with audiences.

Find out how Simulmedia’s unique TV+® platform for TV and streaming advertising provides unified access to premium linear and CTV inventory across all networks and publishers. Request a demo or email us at advertise@simulmedia.com.