FreeWheel Video Monetization Report Highlights Growth of OTT and STB Ad Views

Changing consumer habits emphasise that premium video content belongs on the big screen

London, UK: FreeWheel, the industry’s most complete advertising management solution, has today announced the launch of its Q3 2017 Video Monetisation Report (VMR), revealing a further growth in video ad views, fuelled by the continued rise of OTT devices and STB VOD inventory.

The latest figures showed a 31% year-on-year growth for ad views in Europe, with a 35% rise in video starts.

Ad views on over-the-top (OTT) and set-top box video on-demand (STB VOD) devices grew in both Europe and the US. Digitally inserted ads on STB VOD increased by 190% year-on-year in Europe, while OTT saw a 44% rise – following a 32% rise in Q2 – and now accounts for a quarter of the ads viewed.

This highlights a continued shift towards the consuming of content in a premium, high viewability, living room environment. It is mirrored in the US, where OTT and STB VOD viewing combined made up almost half of ad views (49%), while desktop viewing continued to decline – down from a 37% share in 2016 to 28% in 2017.

The highest growth area in Europe this quarter came from the monetisation of clips content – up by 77% year-on-year. This shows the potential of short-form content of five minutes or less across genres to act as a gateway for wider library offerings.

Other key findings of the report included:

  • Monetisation of live content in Europe dropped slightly from the 4% in Q2 2017 to 3%, despite growing 14% compared to last year. This is primarily driven by the increase in long-form monetisation around entertainment shows, which are a key part of Q3 viewing.
  • With publishers more and more concerned about finding a balance between user experience and monetisation, ad loads in Europe decreased again in Q3. There are now an average of 4.2 ads, lasting 76 seconds within an on demand full episode, as opposed to 5.2 ads lasting 106 seconds in 2016.
  • Full episodes and live stream drove 80% of premium video ad views in the US, with news, entertainment and particularly sports continuing to drive the growth of live stream monetisation.

The FreeWheel Video Monetisation Report is released quarterly and highlights the changing dynamics of how enterprise-class content owners and distributors are monetising premium digital video content.

The data set used for this report is one of the largest available on the usage and monetisation of professional, rights-managed video content worldwide, and is based off of census-level advertising data collected through the FreeWheel platform.

The full report can be downloaded here:

About FreeWheel:

FreeWheel, a Comcast Advanced Advertising Company, is the industry’s most complete advertising management solution. Purpose built for the New TV ecosystem, we enable our collective client base across all key industry segments to manage and monetise their premium video inventory in the brand safe ways they require. Our leading technology, unmatched service and guidance, and collaborative advocacy power the advertising businesses of the largest media and entertainment companies in the world, including AOL, DIRECTV, Fox, NBC Universal, Turner Broadcasting System, and Viacom in the U.S., and MTG, Sky, Canal + and Channel 4 in Europe. Our offerings work in synchronised tandem to meet every aspect of our clients’ business needs across all screens, data sets, and monetisation channels, while providing the full safety, compliance, and control the New TV ecosystem demands. With offices in New York, San Francisco, London, Paris, Beijing, and across the globe, FreeWheel stands to advocate for the entire industry through the FreeWheel Council for Premium Video. For more information please visit, and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.