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Optimizing your


As a growing AVOD business, you need an advertising strategy that’s optimized to deliver maximum revenue and a standout viewer experience. In this module, we review four approaches to up-leveling an ad-supported streaming service, with benefits for both you and your audience.



Finetune Your Ad Strategy

For an AVOD business, optimizing ad strategy is the name of the game. Yes, you want to earn as much ad revenue as possible. But not at the expense of turning off your audience. Run too many ads, and you risk losing viewers and monetization opportunities.

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New Insights on Ad Sensitivity

Many media companies struggle to determine the impact of ad strategy on viewer engagement. Which means they’re never quite sure if they’re maximizing value or missing out on potential profits.

Top tier streaming platforms have stepped in to fill that gap, offering actionable insights for optimizing ad monetization. By combining data from across the ad tech stack, they can correlate the relationship between audience behavior and ad strategy, including variables like ad frequency, duration, and placement. As a result, you can gauge your audience’s ad sensitivity and land on an ad policy that strikes the right balance between revenue generation and a great viewer experience.

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Test, Optimize, Iterate

Of course, optimizing your ad strategy isn’t a one-and-done exercise. Continuous testing and experimentation can yield new insights—and ad dollars. 

For example, you might ask, What is the impact on revenue and engagement if we:

  • Move ads from pre-roll to mid-roll?
  • Increase the ad load from 6 minutes to 7?
  • Run one 30-second ad instead of two 15-second ones?
  • Add a skip button?

Being able to quickly answer questions like these allows you to iteratively optimize your ad strategy—confident that your decisions are based on real data.

Total ad load Ad duration Viewer segment Content length
Ad placement Creative frequency Device type Content genre
Ad frequency Creative duration Geographic region Content title
Total ad load Ad duration
Ad placement Creative frequency
Ad frequency Creative duration
Viewer segment Content length
Device type Content genre
Geographic region Content title
VOD Completion Rates Chart
Ad Insights Dashboard

With Ad Insights from Brightcove, you can dial in the ad strategy that optimizes revenue generation and audience engagement


Expand Your Demand Pool

As you build out a more mature ad monetization strategy, it’s helpful to establish or extend partnerships with video ad marketplaces, demand-side platforms (DSPs), and supply-side platforms (SSPs).

A video ad marketplace can help you fill as much of your ad inventory as possible for the highest CPM. Video ad marketplaces—which work with multiple DSPs and SSPs—allow ad buyers and sellers to trade impressions at scale. For advertisers, they make it easy to reach a target audience with a strategically placed video ad. For publishers and media companies, they offer a convenient way to monetize your content.

How a video ad marketplace helps you grow ad revenue

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Connects your ad inventory with more sources of demand

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Creates more competitive auctions for your ad inventory

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Aggregates your ad inventory into a larger pool that's more attractive to ad buyers

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Monetizes your ad inventory across a variety of platforms, devices, and ad formats

Depending on the nature and maturity of your AVOD business, you can have a video ad marketplace handle your entire inventory or just unsold inventory.

Entire inventory Unsold inventory
That are new to advertising With existing ad partners (like Freewheel or Google Ad Manager) that want to monetize unsold inventory
That don’t have a dedicated Ad Ops or ad sales team With an ad sales team that want a fallback option for impressions not filled with direct inventory
For which advertising is a secondary revenue source That want a solution that better complements their existing tech stack

What to Look for in a Video Ad Marketplace

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The right video ad marketplace for your business will depend on your content library, monthly viewership, ad inventory, geographic markets, and regulatory compliance needs. In addition, to find a high-performing partner, add these capabilities to your checklist: 

  • Access to a large demand pool of agencies and advertisers
  • Support for a variety of video ad formats, devices, and platforms
  • Ability to insert ads into on-demand and live video
  • Bidding options that maximize ad revenue
  • Advanced targeting to improve ad relevance 
  • Powerful analytics and insights for informed decision-making
  • Ad Ops experts to optimize your ad strategy and ad tech


Broaden Content Distribution

Another effective way to boost ad revenue is to distribute ad-supported content more broadly. Here are three opportunities to make new audiences and more inventory strategically available to advertisers. 

1. Support More Devices and Platforms

It pays to be on the platforms and devices that draw the most eyeballs and advertisers.

When pursuing a multi-screen strategy, it’s important to consider what content you’re streaming and where. Every audience segment and geographic region has its viewing preferences. In addition, take care to follow each manufacturer’s advertising guidelines so that ads flow smoothly to your service.

2. Enter New Geographic Markets

Deloitte Global predicts that, by the end of 2023, nearly 66% of consumers in developed countries will use at least one AVOD service monthly.

Ad engagement differs across markets, so tailoring ad strategy to local audiences is essential. You’ll also want to align with the partners (video ad marketplaces, SSPs, and DSPs) that can connect you with advertisers in the region.

3. Launch a FAST Channel

Audiences are flocking to free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST), with advertisers following closely behind.

That makes FAST channels an increasingly lucrative ad monetization opportunity for media companies. According to nScreenMedia, ad revenues earned from FAST channels will top $4 billion in 2023, up from $2.1 billion just two years earlier.


Maximize Ad Tech Performance

Setting up your ad tech and content to maximize revenue is notoriously time consuming and complex. But getting these operational details right is well worth it. Poorly executed ad tech can lead to an inferior viewer experience, lower fill rates, and reduced earning potential. 

To avoid leaving ad dollars on the table, follow these technical tips from our own Ad Ops experts.

Content Metadata

Agencies and technology partners may not serve an ad impression if they can’t identify the content they’re running against. Make sure all your content is tagged with descriptive metadata, like maturity rating or genre, using IAB’s taxonomy. This will enhance ad placement and personalization on your service.

Header Bidding

Header bidding maximizes ad revenue by allowing you to receive bids from competing demand sources simultaneously. Header bidding setup can be tricky and requires ongoing testing and maintenance. Be on the lookout for discrepancies, poorly performing partners, and opportunities to speed up the bidding process.

Ad Tags

Faulty ad tag setup can result in ad failures and foregone revenue. That’s why many media companies have a partner’s Ad Ops team manage this crucial component of ad monetization. An expert partner will ensure that your ad tags are properly configured for different ad formats, ad servers, video players, devices, and more.


You can improve fill rates by serving a backup ad when the primary ad doesn’t play. Common challenges with fallback mechanism include technical integration and increased latency and load times. To mitigate these issues, regularly evaluate the performance of backup ads and explore options to improve primary ad delivery.

Ad Blockers

In our experience, ad blocking can account for 10-30% of missing impressions. You can eliminate these lost revenue opportunities with server side ad insertion (SSAI). SSAI integrates ads into the video stream where they’re not susceptible to ad blockers.

Timeout Setting

Timeouts are one of the most common ad errors. Giving ads more time to load is a simple fix that can deliver strong results. The key is selecting a timeout setting that increases impressions without degrading the viewer experience.

For your inventory to yield maximum revenue, it’s also important to stay on top of the latest trends in video advertising. New techniques, policies, and regulations can require technical changes to sustain growth and avoid errors.

Expert Voices

quote left Badly executed ad tech risks seriously damaging the user experience, with buffering, excessive ad loading, and repetition being common complaints. quote right


Grow your AVOD business

AVOD success requires maximizing ad revenue while delivering a streaming experience that keeps audiences tuned in and coming back. To optimize your ad monetization strategy, consider enlisting a partner that provides:

  • Access to a leading video ad marketplace and large demand pool
  • Actionable decisioning insights to test and optimize ad strategy
  • Ad Ops experts who understand all the ins and outs of ad monetization
  • A streaming platform that monetizes across devices, formats, and markets

AVOD revenue is on the rise. Dialing in your ad strategy and tech stack is the key to capitalizing on this fast-growing, multi-billion-dollar global market.




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