As the World gets more connected and younger generations learn advanced computer skills before they reach pre-school, finding your target audience should be easier, right?

Perhaps. A quick couple of texts and a ‘Merry Christmas!’ Facebook status can take care of everything except a card for Great-Aunty Beryl, for which you will have to navigate the Christmas post.

For advertisers however, the constant expansion of devices, networks and platforms calls for a nuanced operation, particularly when it comes to children. With this most sensitive of audiences, the choice between television and online advertising is not simply one of screen choice but targeting and safety.  Below we compare 5 key areas to see which platform is most useful.

TV icon.jpg

How Young are Children?

16 and under.

 

Time Spent on Platform

13 hours, 36 minutes per week

 

Scheduling and Targeting

While the reach and capabilities of addressable TV continue to grow, time remains the main tool for locating young audiences and setting the boundaries for appropriate content. In addition to the 7:30pm curfew and the 9:00pm watershed, the ASA Broadcast Code suggests that sensitivity be shown at times like Christmas, when programmes aimed at children might be shown outside of usual hours. Regulations are also in place for channels that are specifically dedicated to child audiences.

Regulations

Television advertising cannot:

·         Encourage anything that may be harmful to children

·         Take advantage of childhood innocence

·         Mislead children

·         Ask children to persuade their parents into a purchase

·         Make children feel inferior for not owning the product

 

Brand safety

Adverts aimed at children cannot accompany ‘sensitive programming’ that could be frightening or expose them to adult content. The proximity is often determined by time.

 
Digital-icon.jpg

How Young are Children?

16 and under.

 

Time Spent on Platform

15 hours per day

 

Scheduling and Targeting

As more is done to regulate online space and protect children, online advertising is both becoming more accountable and requiring more skill to successfully and ethically reach children. With first and third-party data use out of the question, contextual targeting is king. Although it is subject to more stringent regulations than TV advertising, it also has the potential to offer a more meaningful connection between brands and audiences.  

 

Regulations

Online advertising is subject to the above and also cannot:

·         Exploit children in relation to charitable donations

·         Undermine parental authority

·         Make reality and fantasy indistinguishable

 

 

 

Brand Safety

The ongoing child protection crisis that has dogged sites like YouTube in 2017 has certainly made headlines but it is not the full story. In app environments offer brand safety and higher engagement rates.