In the era of cord-cutting and the challenges it poses to marketers and advertisers struggling to reach children, AVODs with kids content are becoming an increasingly attractive option, according to a new report from market research firm TVREV.
The big issue for advertisers looking to connect with kids is that when they spend on AVODs, they typically don’t know where their ads are airing because the platforms won’t tell them. Although this is for a good reason—to prevent marketers from cherry-picking where their ads run—this lack of transparency is having a restrictive impact on spend, says Alan Wolk, industry analyst and author of the “Ad-Supported Kids and Family Streaming Content Can Help CTV Advertisers Combat Transparency Challenges” report.
But COPPA-compliant platforms that have kids content are required to vet everything, and advertisers are told exactly where and when their ads will run, making it easy for them to gauge ROI, according to the report.
Advertisers are turning to these kid-friendly platforms in order to get a clearer sense of what their ad spend is yielding, and they’re also attracted to what is proving to be a slow but sure way to build their reach with families, says Wolk. He adds that AVODs help advertisers solve the problem of reaching kids shifting away from linear TV in favor of watching content on platforms like Netflix and Disney+.
And the opportunity is growing. The number of AVOD viewers in the US is on the rise—it’s pegged to go from 140 million this year to 170 million by 2026, according to market research firm Statista.
This has attracted increased interest from aggregators like The Roku Channel, which is eager to add more kids content to grow its audience, says its AVOD director Ashley Hovey.
Roku has significantly expanded its offering of live and linear kids programming since it got into the genre in 2019. The platform now has more than 63 million subscribers and is looking to reach more families by launching additional kids channels, says Hovey.
For LA-based digital media company pocket.watch, Roku was the missing piece in a strategy to expand the reach of its stable of creator partners including Ryan’s World and The Onyx Family beyond YouTube, says CEO Chris M. Williams. Not wanting to go directly into traditional TV because of declining viewership, and needing a medium that could deliver a variety of content in different ways, Roku was a natural fit, he explains. The platform checks off other important boxes as well, boasting a large audience, live and linear channels that kids are already watching and established family co-viewing.
AVODs are also an effective testing ground for assessing what kids want to see. With its Ryan and Friends channel on Roku, for example, pocket.watch noted that other featured brands such as MarMar Land and Scratch Garden were equally popular as hit YouTuber Ryan Kaji. And putting these creators together on linear channels helped audiences discover them all, says Williams.
Image courtesy of The Roku Channel.