How do you sell take-out when no-one’s going out? In the new world of over-the-top (OTT) TV advertising, Brooke Bowhay is navigating the pandemic by looking beyond fragmentation, leaning on mobile and leveraging delivery.

Bowhay is director of planning and activation for ad agency Carat, which won the Jack In The Box account in 2017.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, she says the last year of coronavirus has changed a lot.

Changing behavior

“The pandemic has vastly changed consumer behaviours,” Bowhay says. “We’re craving more content, we’re consuming more content and, at the same time, there’s not as much content being produced. So how do we balance those two things?

“There’s a new streaming service coming to fruition it seems like every day.

“How do we get rid of that fragmentation? We want to be able to buy that all in a one-stop shop, especially as consumer behaviour goes up in the streaming world.”

Embrace distraction

Bowhay is echoing a common refrain from media buyers – the OTT explosion presents an amazing opportunity to reach new audiences and target them on TV, just as in digital, but the proliferating number of options and buying paths makes this confusing.

Carat’s USA clients also include Cadbury, Mastercard, P&G, Philips and GM.

But Bowhay says brands shouldn’t only reach consumers through the new TV options.

“Second screen tactics are incredibly vital,” she says. “The TV viewing experience today does not only involve a TV. It always involves a mobile phone too.

“I can’t tell you the last time that I watched a TV show where I wasn’t pulling up IMDb and looking at who the actors were in the show or was playing words with friends while I was watching.

“You need to be able to be where the consumer is and, when the consumer is watching the TV, they are not sitting on their couch staring at their TV. They’re distracted. They’re looking at their phone.

“So we really need to play into that if you want to truly be a part of that TV viewing experience.”

TV in the box

To get through the pandemic, Jack In The Box encouraged social media users to stay at home using #StayInTheBox and allowed high school seniors to experience their prom using #PromInTheBox, as part of an effort leaning toward live streaming.

It’s necessary, because business fundamentals have changed, Bowhay says.

“We used to have a big focus on getting individual people during their commute to and from work – that’s, of course, not happening as much anymore,” she says.

“A lot of our consumers are essential workers, so they are out and they are commuting and they still need to grab that quick bite on the go. So that has remained constant for us.

“Something that has changed, though, beyond that, is there is more delivery now, of course, and there’s more competition. When you’re looking at delivery, your competition is no longer just McDonald’s or Taco Bell but, with delivery apps, your competition is now the mom-and-pop burger shop across the street.

“So it’s really looking at a brand new competitive set now throughout the pandemic.”

You are watching “Media Innovation: What’s Next,” a Beet.TV leadership series presented by Samsung Ads. For more videos, please visit this page.