6 Digital Video Trends for 2019 That Can’t Be Ignored

Amrita Hemdev
By Amrita Hemdev
January 16, 2019

The digital video landscape that consists of TV and over-the-top (OTT) continues to evolve as consumers adopt more digital video and streaming options. This transformation is driven by consumer demand for more personalized and relevant experiences, and delivering those experiences requires a substantial advertising strategy and technology that taps into the full power of data.

U.S. programmatic video ad spending will reach $33.6 billion by 2020, increasing by more than $11 billion over the 2018 total of $22.5 billion.

The first quarter of 2019 is well underway, and much is happening in the world of advertising, which is set to see even more advancements in the year ahead, with OTT advertising currently the most significant trend. Digital video advertising budgets continue to rise, and advertisers must continue to evolve practices as they strive to make their content relevant.

Here are six digital video trends that are reshaping the digital advertising landscape. As you set your goals for the year ahead, consider following these trends to build a rock-solid advertising strategy for your campaigns.


As consumers embrace OTT services, more people will continue to cancel pay TV services.

The rate of cord-cutting will continue to accelerate.

As per the latest eMarketer report, cord-cutting will be driven mostly by the increased adoption of linear OTT services, which are on track to more than double their U.S. audience in the next four years.

2019: the year advertising and marketing professionals need to commit to connected TV (CTV). As cord-cutting continues to accelerate, agencies and advertisers must look forward and embrace the change CTV brings.

OTT platforms are growing in number and size. Consumers who want to cut the cord now have a variety of options that didn’t exist a couple of years ago, so we expect the offerings to become even more robust as more players enter the market.

In 2019, an important shift will take place among U.S. adults who don’t subscribe to pay TV: For the first time, cord-cutters (those who cancel service) will outnumber cord-nevers (those who have never subscribed to pay TV). Furthermore, eMarketer foresees this pattern extending through 2022, when it is expected that there will be 55.1 million cord-cutters, versus 40.3 million cord-nevers. These projections, which date from July 2018, represent a big shift from a year earlier when it was expected cord-nevers to outnumber cord-cutters for the duration of the forecast.


CTV advertising will continue to scale up.

Up to 20% of CTV advertising will be transacted programmatically.

There are many reasons why advertising has hung back from consumer adoption of CTV, but as the advertising industry works through technical, business, and workflow challenges, the gap will start to close.


Mobile will drive most ad spending growth.

eMarketer predicts that the total U.S. mobile video ad spending will increase substantially in the next few years, reaching $24.8 billion by 2022, nearly doubling 2018’s total of almost $13 billion. This growth rate will slightly exceed that of digital video ad spending overall, indicating that mobile will represent a growing share of the total over the forecast period.

With the steady increase in mobile users, advertisers don’t want their campaigns to miss such a large segment of the market. Although widespread smartphone consumption is not a new trend, mobile marketing advertising has plenty of room to grow, and mobile-friendly content – video especially – will continue to grow and adapt.


Ad-supported video content is on the rise.

A September 2018 study led by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) found that 63% of U.S. viewers of ad-supported video said they didn’t mind seeing ads if the content was free. In addition, a large share of respondents (59%) said they didn’t mind seeing ads if they could watch whenever they wanted.

OTT ads run on ad-supported-video-on-demand (AVOD), free-to-use platforms like SlingTV, Roku, and FuboTV. With the popularity of OTT content soaring, it is likely that business models will change as technology and consumption habits continue to evolve.

As an advertiser, you have the opportunity to incorporate OTT advertising into your mix to better segment the market, build your user base, reach a new set of customers, and offer a more diverse experience than ever before.  


ad behaviour chart


Digital video ads will continue to dominate.

The average daily time spent watching digital video has increased and is expected to continue to grow, while time spent on traditional TV (accessed via cable connections) trends in the opposite direction.

In 2018, U.S. adults spent an average of 3 hours, 45 minutes per day watching TV, compared to 1 hour, 26 minutes with digital video. While these figures show that TV still dominates in the mix of visual media, digital video continues to gain ground.

The gap between TV and digital video time spent will continue to close. By 2020, U.S. adults will spend an average of 3 hours, 31 minutes with TV, compared to 1 hour, 38 minutes with digital video. If the current trend lines continue, the two media should approach a 2:1 ratio (TV to video) of time spent in the next few years.


OTT users will multiply.

According to eMarketer’s report, the number of U.S. linear OTT users is going to more than double to 35.1 million in 2022, from 16.6 million this year. It’s a big leap, and most users will be cord-cutters or cord-nevers.

As new services join the party, it’s likely that even more viewers will ditch traditional pay-TV subscriptions for digital alternatives.

2019 has ushered in a mighty shift in digital advertising. New trends have entered the marketplace, and your company or media agency needs to pay attention. With the need to become more visible and reach more customers, the advertising of tomorrow offers advancements in emerging technologies as consumers demand a better experience at a cheaper cost.

If 2018 has been rough for your ad campaigns, consider these trends in your strategy for 2019 to help you maximize your budget and ultimately achieve better results.

When you're ready to use these trends as a part of your digital advertising strategy, we're here to help you accelerate your success!

Stay up to date on how these trends will continue to redefine the digital advertising landscape by subscribing to our email newsletters.


Picture of Amrita Hemdev

Amrita Hemdev

Amrita is an inbound marketer. She studied marketing and project management at UC Berkeley and proceeded to work in a fast-paced, digital advertising tech startup, with a goal of increasing brand awareness. She is currently the Content Marketing Specialist at ZypMedia. Passionate about digital marketing and having six years of experience in this field, she also started her digital marketing and creative agency, Sociato, based in India.