As the connected TV (CTV) landscape continues to evolve, a concerning revelation has emerged in the 2023 Programmatic CTV Benchmark Report by Peer39. The report underscores how a significant portion of CTV channels hosting fake or unsuitable content are populated by advertisements from Fortune 500 companies, constituting a substantial 45% of such ads. While CTV’s growth has made it an attractive platform for advertisers, this occurrence raises questions about the quality and suitability of content within the CTV realm.
Fake content, as defined by the report, encompasses a wide range of materials, from ad-supported screensavers and white noise generators to game channels and mobile apps posing as CTV. These elements significantly deviate from traditional TV programming content, challenging brands’ traditional advertising approaches.
To compile this report, Peer39 utilized semantic technology to meticulously assess more than 50,000 OTT apps categorized as CTV content. Alarmingly, over 10,000 of these apps were found to meet the criteria for fake CTV content. It’s noteworthy that Peer39’s pre-bid ad targeting data tool also revealed that a staggering 6.8% of all programmatic CTV ad calls originate from these fraudulent CTV sites.
To delve deeper, Peer39 conducted a comprehensive 10-week analysis, during which researchers closely examined fake and divisive channels. Their findings revealed a startling 594 ads from 163 unique advertisers on fake channels. Remarkably, 37% of these ads were traced back to Fortune 500 corporations. These high-profile brands often represent the epitome of cautiousness when it comes to content safety and suitability, raising concerns about the alignment of premium brands with inappropriate content.
The findings underscore the pressing need for brands and advertisers to maintain stringent controls over the placement of their ads. As an additional indicator of the need for safety, a recent study revealed that approximately 22% of the entire digital ad spend and 30% of the budget allocated for mobile advertising are susceptible to being lost to fraudulent activities in 2023.