Getting Closer With CTV Audiences: An Advertiser’s Guide To Key Viewer Groups

With the approach of holiday shopping season, Daniel Elad, Chief Strategy Officer of TheViewPoint, offers a look at key CTV viewer groups – their psychological peculiarities, content preferences, interests, and purchase habits –  to help brands define the right approach to their target audience.

Connected TV is one of the cornerstones of the digital television realm. According to this latest report, 69.8 million U.S. households consume video via CTV. That’s a pretty nice slice of the audience pie that advertisers shouldn’t neglect, with a number of generations, each with a general profile based on their lifestyles and consuming habits that in tandem define the ultimate user portrait.

Who is Who? 

Every single person is a unique universe with their own wants. Advertisers who are on the way to boosting their businesses via CTV should clearly understand the background and motivations of their audiences. So here are brief outlines of the all four generations that are consuming streaming video via CTV today.

Baby Boomers (Silver Streamers)

Most of them feel hesitant about modern sophisticated tech solutions and services. Still, there are many families where Baby Boomers’ sons and grandsons try to instill a love of convenient CTV in an attempt to bring entertainment to their seniors’ lives. And as the state of play shows, this generation is ready for  contemporary streaming services.        


  • Disciplined: Baby Boomers are rarely distracted by any parallel activity when watching CTV
  • Squander-resistant: they strongly prefer the AVOD model rather than the SVOD one
  • Information-addicted: news and documentary is the dominant content vertical for them, but they’re also commonly excited by thrillers
  • Loyal: besides reading, gardening, and traveling, watching TV is one of the favorite leisure-time activities for this group.

Generation X (Do-It-All Streamers)

They are Millennials’ parents with a birth swing from 1965 to 1980. This generation is also considered as a self-reliant or self-disciplined generation because many parents were absorbed by work. For this reason, Gen Xers’ upbringing was a matter left on their own. Today, a lot of them are married and have children. These people remember their school years without computing machines and how humanity drew the line between before and after the introduction of the computer to the world. Many of them often look back to remind themselves what life was like when most of their communication was offline.


  • Sentimental..: videos that relate to past entertainment, pop-culture, music, and events are their nostalgic redemption (advertisers can win them over with retro-style creatives on CTV).   
  • …and practical: besides nostalgia, they like watching informative and how-to video content (for how-to content advertisers can make good use of pause-ads, as viewers often stop videos to master what they just watched). 
  • Family format: when it comes to a family dining, people usually watch something that will be interesting for both parents and their children. Hence, popular TV series, cooking or travel channels, or any kind of family-focused video is the flagman here.
  • Time-savers: normally, Gen Xers prefer offline shopping especially in a place where it’s possible to purchase all products of certain categories in one place, like wholesale clubs. Supermarket networks and producers of products placed on shelves, should keep in mind this insight.

Millennials (Jet Streamers)

They are young, energetic, and have  good purchasing power as many of them are high earners. The latter fact explains why Millennials often have several streaming devices in their households and why they are SVOD devotees. Being adherents of comfort and convenience, this generation chooses widescreen CTV for video content consumption. They enjoy online-shopping marathons and are very picky. At the same time, shopping malls are their offline spots to make purchases. Gen Ys are addicted to hype content and follow the latest premiers in cinema, popular fitness and lifestyle channels. 


  • Fashionable: many of them do sports just because it’s a trend. Or, some of them become vegans for the same reason. Even the professions they choose should be modish. With this in mind, marketers can find an approach to them by creating hype-thematic advertising scripts.   
  • Fear of missing out: this cluster of people is very sensitive to the FOMO syndrome. They are surrounded by success stories like “Millionaire at 22” and they want to be successful too. Advertisers can utilize this trigger ultimately by adding a “promising” tone of voice into campaigns.
  • Ad avoiders: since most Millennials use the SVOD model, those brands that can afford product placement into relevant video content can cultivate brand loyalty within such a coveted, solvent audience.
  • Highly selective: when choosing any goods or services, they’re meticulous in terms of their quality. Advertisers who work with this target audience should ensure a topflight user experience and robust customer support. Marketers have only one chance to make the first impression, and it must be flawless.

Centennials (Streamloaders)

They born with mobile phones in their hands, so they are digital-savvy; their era started in 1995 They assimilate new information extremely rapidly and in a much larger volume than any other generation. That’s why it’s a great challenge for marketers to sustain their attention as Centennials spend it on something genuine, unique, and creative. They practice subscription borrow or feel fine about ad-supported video content. Their favourite genres include: reality, comedy, documentary, romance, and music streaming.


  • Eco-concerned: By and large Gen Zers are aware of the biggest environmental problems and are proactive in social projects aimed to change the situation. For brands, it’s a plain signal to stick to socially-responsible policies.
  • Privacy-concerned: Centennials are extremely sensitive to their privacy, so it’s normal for them to turn geolocation off and hide personal data as much as they can. That’s why in-app CTV ads are a valuable channel to reach them 
  • Financial sufficient: despite them all being school and college aged, their purchase power is estimated at $140 billion. Since Streamloaders are the youngest audience, they are potential “carriers” of the highest LTV.
  • Followers-addicted: their role models aren’t the richest people in the world, but the most popular on Instagram and other social networks. If advertisers apply endorsements in their marketing, they should choose from top-rated users of such social platforms. 


So what?

These audience portraits are clear enough to see promising opportunities for multidisciplinary businesses. All four generations shape an immense and unique targeted audience pool that any advertiser can benefit from. The pandemic crisis has made people rethink their consumption habits and tighten their belts, so the dominant share of viewers are still AVOD supporters. 

Such a free-of-charge concept drives cable TV users to flock to the cord-cutters club, which means the consequent growth of the CTV audience. As to SVOD viewers, they’re also on the radar of big brands that can afford product placement. So what? So it’s a good time for advertisers to follow their audience more actively and take advantage of CTV advertising.     

The Bottom Line

We all have our own quirky lifepaths with ups and downs, but people love to relax and have some fun to clear our minds. Television resonates among every generation – CTV knows no age.  


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