Why Dr Teal’s is using connected TV to beef up its media mix

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Self-care and wellness line Dr Teal’s is beefing up its media mix, layering in more connected television to keep up with shoppers who are increasingly spending more time in that space.

Late last year, the PDC Brands-owned company rolled out the biggest advertising campaign in its 20-year-history, with 30-second video spots running across connected TV, digital and social. Starting with its recent “Soak it In” campaign, the brand says it has started spending more media dollars, investing in more diverse media channels and producing more creative assets as business grows, said Brad Essig, CMO at PDC Brands. As people spend increasingly more time watching content on connected devices, Dr Teal’s hopes to snap up more of that streaming audience. Essig did not provide exact spend figures.

“The whole world is doing a lot more connected TV given we’re all home watching a lot more content now,” said Essig. “We’re seeing that growth and we’re leaning into connected TV a lot more today to help tell our story.”

In Q4 last year, the wellness brand worked with Curiosity creative agency to produce the campaign spots across digital, CTV, OTT and social media. That looked like video spots across platforms such as Discovery Networks like TLC and HGTV to Hulu, or the Weather app, and featured private, relaxing moments, like a bath, featuring Dr Teal’s products.

Traditionally, Dr Teal’s has spent the bulk of its advertising dollars on digital media, especially social channels like Facebook, Instagram, Google and YouTube. “We like those platforms obviously for the reach and the targeting that everyone gets, and the data we can get,” Essig said. But with this most recent campaign, the wellness brand has leaning more heavily into digital video. It’s unclear exactly how those ad dollars are spent as Essig did not respond to a request to provide further details.

“All we are trying to do is introduce this brand and get you to try it. It’s a recruitment strategy for the brand, for all of our brands. It’s about penetration,” he said.

Per Kantar, Dr Teal’s spent just over $10,000 on media from January to September of 2021. That number was significantly down from that same time frame in the year prior, in which Dr Teal’s spent nearly $37,000. (Those numbers do not include social media as Kantar does not track those figures. Also, figures for network radio only include through March 2021.)

Across the industry, advertisers such as Shutterfly, Hydrow rowing company and Vivid Seats are increasingly ramping up their media mixes to include more digital video as more people spend time streaming videos. CTV is expected to continue surging in both usage and ad spend. Last year, eMarketer forecasted that U.S. CTV ad spend would reach more than $19 billion.

However, media buyers warn advertisers to keep in mind that the majority of watch time is still spent with non-ad-supported video streaming services like Netflix, said Liz Phelps, managing director of integrated media at PPK ad agency. That makes it more difficult to reach consumers, Phelps added, especially when considering increased demand and competition in the marketplace.

“When planning, advertisers need to optimize their budgets across the entire media plan as we see media forming a dynamic and non-linear ecosystem,” Phelps said via email. “As media consumption continues to morph, it is important to adapt communications to consumers’ needs along their decision journey.”

For advertisers leveraging a digital-first strategy, Phelps said they should consider only ad-supported digital video with linear TV while tapping into other touchpoints to drive reach as well as customer engagement.

Hyun Lee-Miller, vice president of media at independent agency Good Apple agreed.

“A full-funnel video strategy delivers that 1-2 punch by first capturing awareness via high impact CTV, then layering in social video platforms that foster the brand engagement and interactivity that ultimately drives consideration and purchase,” Lee-Miller added via email.

For Dr Teal’s, the plan is to continue brand awareness efforts, per Essig. Over the next year, the wellness brand has plans to continue expanding CTV, investing more as they go along, as well as look into TikTok with a test and learn approach, he added. 

“For us, it’s about how we authentically and in a very relevant way reach more and more consumers,” Essig said. “That’s why we’re testing more platforms.”


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