Are The Oscars® a Viable Opportunity for Mobile Advertisers?

The Oscars still represents a good opportunity for mobile advertisers to reach audiences

Estimated 26.5 million US viewers (Many of Whom Engage in Mobile Apps Simultaneously)

According to Nielsen, the 2018 Oscars® drew in 26.5 million viewers in the US, and although the number is the smallest TV audience on record for the ceremony (a 19% drop from 33 million viewers last year),  the Oscars is still considered to be one of the year’s biggest TV events. Apart from the US, the broadcast also attracts film fans in more than 225 countries.

While the worldwide TV audience is difficult to quantify (based on differing sources and ideas about what qualifies as a view), suffice it to say there’s still a significant interest.  The Hollywood Reporter estimated back in 2015 an additional 5.5 million viewers coming from Canada, 5.45 million in Latin America, 4.5 million in India, 3.8 million in Mexico, 2.2 million in the Middle East, and 1 million viewers in each: the UK, Japan and Scandinavia, staying up late in their respective time zones to watch the live show – and likely to engage in a mobile app leading up to or during the broadcast.

Mobile App Usage during the Broadcast

As more audiences move seamlessly between traditional TV viewing and online streaming, mobile apps are now a bigger part of the “appointment TV” experience.

The show was available for streaming on the ABC app for mobile devices, and there are a variety of news apps, entertainment apps and companion apps that offered Oscar-related content.  For example, an Awards Guide provides a deeper look into the nominees, while movie apps such as the Fandango app lets film buffs prepare for the big night by looking up movie trailers and ratings. Entertainment apps such as E! News helps viewers keep up with Red Carpet moments.  And let’s not forget the litany of apps dedicated to throwing Oscar-viewing parties and entertaining.

Viewers are simultaneously using social media apps during the broadcast, to tweet and share their enthusiasm. Last year across Twitter, tweets + retweets of hashtag #Oscars exceeded 2.7million, not to mention several trending hashtag variations such as #oscars, #Oscars2017, and so on.  As celebrities use the awards show as a platform to bring awareness to social issues, Twitter plays an integral role in several movements such as #MeToo and #OscarsSoWhite.

This year, Twitter ran a commercial during the Oscars broadcast, featuring some of its female employees and prominent females (director Ava Duvernay, writer/producer Issa Rae, Oracle executive Jennifer Renaud) to acknowledge the lack of women in technology, using the hashtag #WeAreHere.

Mobile In-App Advertising

We examined the activity happening across the Leadbolt Mobile Advertising Platform for Sunday, March 4th, 5pm-9pm PT to uncover trends and data that could shed light on the opportunity around the Oscars.

Looking at the same day analysis for Oscar Sunday, as compared to last Sunday, we saw:

  • In-app Ad Fulfilment increase of 79%, as more advertisers prepared mobile campaigns to run during this time
  • Premium (e.g., rates paid) increase of 41% in Entertain & Celebrity categories, as advertisers compete to reach these users
  • Available inventory (e.g., number of ads/amount of ad space available from app publishers) increased 129% in the media & video categories

Key takeaway for mobile marketers:

Advertising within Social, Entertainment, News, and various Oscar-related app environments enables brands to reach massive audiences with a broad range of interests.  From film buffs, to fashionistas, home entertainers, and viewers who are passionate about social causes, the Oscar goes to… mobile apps!

*Academy Award(s)®, Oscar(s)®, Oscar Night® and Oscar® statuette design mark are the registered trademarks and service marks, and the Oscar® statuette the copyrighted property, of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

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MarketingAre The Oscars® a Viable Opportunity for Mobile Advertisers?