DoubleVerify launches ad verification tool for CTV

DoubleVerify is making advancements in the TV advertising space, unveiling Tuesday a solution that can verify an ad’s viewability for connected TV. Meaning advertisers can now determine if an ad within a CTV app was actually seen by a user.

The product launch marks the first time a viewability measurement solution for CTV has hit the market. DoubleVerify noted lack of technical standardization previously hindered progress on CTV ad viewability. Video Player-Ad Interface Definition (VPAID), a standard that advertisers have historically used to measure engagement for digital video, isn’t supported for CTV.

“As CTV impressions continue to be sold at a premium, brands need insight into which platforms and environments offer the best viewability rates," stated DoubleVerify CEO Mark Zagorski in a statement. "To that end, we're excited to launch this first-of-its-kind solution and continue to lead in measurement and innovation for CTV buyers.”

In a recent interview with Fierce Video, Applause CTO Rob Mason discussed some of the challenges with measuring ad frequency, specifically for ads that play during live events.

“We’re not yet at the point of technology where you can have a computer watch a long video and tell you, ‘this ad came up four times,’” Mason said. “It seems basic, but these are the kinds of things that we are asked to check.”

Ensuring viewability is especially critical given the frequency of ad fraud across CTV. DoubleVerify last year uncovered one in four top CTV environments continued to play ads even after the viewer turned off the device – an issue that DoubleVerify coined as “TV off.” When that happens, advertisers can potentially lose out on significant ad dollars.

To combat the “TV off” problem, DoubleVerify has urged advertisers to develop ad campaigns for “fully on-screen” CTV environments, i.e., campaigns that only display ads when the TV screen is on with the ad 100% displayed.

DoubleVerify is continuing to gain traction for its advertising products, as last month it obtained MRC accreditation for its Authentic Attention metrics. Netflix has also enlisted the vendor to verify viewability in the streamer’s new ad-supported tier.

Another ad fraud issue prevalent across CTV is ad spoofing, a form of invalid traffic (IVT) that occurs when one app masquerades as another app. News and sports-focused CTV apps were found to be more susceptible to ad spoofing, per data from Pixalate.

DoubleVerify’s viewability product comes as industry groups seek to create more unified standards for ad measurement. IAB Tech Lab this year has pledged to double down on interoperability, data privacy, and other issues pertaining to the advertising industry.