Don’t put all your money in digital to reach affluent Asians: Ipsos

Affluent Asian consumers have yet to fully embrace digital media, according to an Ipsos study.

Affluent Asian consumers are not disengaged from advertising, and digital aficionados who shun TV and print are not necessarily the biggest spenders among the well-heeled group. These are some of the consumer insights into affluent Asian consumers highlighted in the latest Ipsos’ Affluent Asia survey.

Zeroing on media-consumption findings from Q2 2017, the study reveals that 42.2% access only traditional media, compared to 37.5% for a combination of traditional and digital, while only 2% access only digital media. Likewise, data on respondents from the markets studied (which excludes China) between Q3 2016 to Q2 2017 shows that total TV and print reach are enhanced by digital. The overall study this year was based on 24,250 samples from 11 markets in APAC.

News consumption habits of affluent Asian consumers (excluding China).

Along the same lines, the study reveals that consumers who consume a combination of traditional and digital media are likely to be bigger spenders. They own three or more financial and upscale household products and have taken business or first-class flights, for example. The study notes that the affluent cohort accounts for the top 20% by income of the APAC population and further points out that not all ad spend should be invested on digital.

In comparison, Chinese affluent consumers are more inclined toward consuming media via digital devices, even though a higher percentage are still watching entertainment content on TV compared to news and documentaries. Therefore, a cross-platform strategy is especially important for reaching Chinese consumers.

Cross-platform consumption of Chinese consumers.

Source: campaignasia.com; 24 Nov 2017

TV Viewers Are Demanding More Options, and Streaming Services Are Happy to Oblige

Same channels, different remote control

The good news: TV lovers still love watching TV. The not as good news: Viewers aren’t watching it in the same way as they used to (and until relatively recently).

Set-top cable boxes have dwindled in popularity over the past four years. As consumers turn to connected TVs and devices, they have less need for a monthly box-rental fee and thousands of channels they don’t watch.

According to a study from Hub Entertainment Research, viewers reported that for the first time since tracking began in 2014, watching TV online was more popular than watching on a set-top box.

About 52 percent of viewers now say they watch their favorite shows online via services like Netflix, Hulu or Amazon, on a network’s own site or app, or via other online services like iTunes. Forty-eight percent of viewers prefer to watch TV live, on DVR or through an on-demand platform.

The emergence of streaming TV

TV started with limited broadcast networks and appointment viewing. If you missed an episode, that was it. Today, consumers can choose what channels they pay for, on what devices they watch those channels, which episodes to watch and when to tune in. Viewers are in control of the remote, and TV networks and providers are trying to be as flexible as their consumers need them to be.

Today, viewers hold all the power. They’re demanding high-quality content on their preferred devices at the time of their choice, and the companies that helped create the disruption and challenge to the status quo have been happy to oblige.

Sling TV is one such example. The skinny-cable bundle launched in 2015 when there was no live TV streaming service letting users control which channels they watch and pay for.

“We saw an opportunity to reach both cord cutters and cord-nevers,” said Jimshade Chaudhari, vp of marketing and management at Sling TV. “Lots of those people were frustrated with traditional TV back then and still are today.”

Sling TV currently provides two subscription plans with many add-on packages, giving users a customizable experience based on the TV channels they actually want to watch.

“The concept from a consumer standpoint caught on right away,” Chaudhari said. “[Viewers had] been waiting a long time for something like this. And as they got familiar with what it was, they got more control and flexibility than they ever got from the traditional cable experience.”

Subscribers to contract-free services like Sling, Playstation Vue, YouTube TV and other similar platforms can cancel any time at no fee, something not all cable companies allow in their contracts. Additionally, many of these platforms are available on multiple smart TV-connected devices like Roku, Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV where viewers can install other apps for entertainment like games or podcasts.

Even though the mechanics of viewership have started to shift, one thing has remained the same—people still love TV.

“It’s an escape for them,” Chaudhari said. “They want entertainment and really easy access to it that they don’t have to think about. Netflix helped drive the watch-on-your-own-time sensibility early on, and now consumers want more flexibility.”

Libraries and live options

Hulu, another pioneer in the entertainment streaming world, has seen the shift on a larger scale. As it celebrates its 10th anniversary, the platform has added more movies, shows, original programs, premium network add-ons and now live TV.

“Our lives as viewers have been changed irreversibly,” said Ben Smith, Hulu’s svp and head of experience. “Hulu was radical when it launched, but we’ve been all about putting the user in control of the time and place they watch content they love since the beginning.”

When Hulu considers what to develop or provide, it always considers the viewer first and tries to find a way to make that experience friendly to both users and advertisers, according to Smith.

Personalization and questioning what TV will be is at the top of Hulu’s agenda as it looks forward to the next decade.

“We don’t sell ads into shows, but we sell audiences to advertisers,” Smith said. “If Ford wants to reach a male audience aged 25 to 35 in the Midwest, we can do that. And if you don’t fall into that category, then you won’t see that ad.”

In addition to contextually appropriate ads tailored to the audience, Hulu is also mindful of ad repetition (“Zero people want to see the same ad five times in one hour,” Smith said) and providing viewers with the option not to see ads. Hulu offers commercial-free streaming options subscribers can add onto the company’s live-TV plan or its streaming library plan.

“Consumers are expecting experiences that are tailored to their needs,” Smith said. “Hulu, Spotify, Amazon—all these companies are working to empower the consumer.”

Source: adweek.com; 20 Nov 2017

Netflix Could Become Industry’s Biggest Spender On Content In 2018

Netflix says it may spend as much as $8 billion on content in 2018 — a figure that could make it the biggest content buyer of any media or technology company.

The company slipped the figure into its quarterly letter to shareholders Monday evening, adding that it had $17 billion in content commitments over the next few years, and is expected to spend between $7 billion and $8 billion on content in 2018.

For comparison, the $8 billion figure would be nearly twice what broadcast networks like NBC and CBS spend on content, according to data from SNL Kagan and Boston Consulting Group.

The only other company to spend more on content than Netflix until now has been ESPN, which totalled an estimated $7.3 billion in 2016, largely due to expensive live sports rights.

If ESPN’s spend is similar to what it was in 2016, Netflix could be poised to surpass the Disney-owned cable sports giant. Of course, sports rights tend to rise in price over time, thanks to contracts that were signed years ago, before the cable bundle began to fray. So ESPN’s spot atop the content world may yet be secure.

Netflix’s rapidly growing content spend adds to its competitive challenge for ad-supported media. The more cash it spends on content, the more eyeballs Netflix can steal from other sources of video, including many ad-supported companies.

Source: mediapost.com; 17 Oct 2017

Millennials mostly watch TV after it’s aired

Older people still watch more live TV, but that’s changing.

Millennials don’t watch live TV most of the time. People aged 18-34 spend 55 percent of their video-watching time consuming content after it has already aired on live TV, according to a new study from the Consumer Technology Association. Only 45 percent of that time is spent with live television.

Of the video millennials do watch, 35 percent comes from streaming services like Netflix or on-demand video from a pay TV. They spend 20 percent of their viewing time watching recorded shows off their DVR.

The switch to time-shifted TV puts further pressure on TV networks that are struggling to make their shows attractive to advertisers and retain audiences — audiences that are increasingly seeking out entertainment elsewhere, such as on Snapchat and Facebook. That’s one of the key reasons why advertisers still pay a lot of money to be next to sports content like the NFL despite its flattening audience: Sports still compel people to watch live.

People older than 35 do spend a majority of their viewing time, or 66 percent, with live TV.

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But even so, live TV has been losing ground across all demographics. The share of consumers who watch live TV at least once a week, according to the CTA study, has shrunk from 92 percent in 2014 to 80 percent in 2017.

That viewing time has been supplanted by an increase in TV watching through paid and free websites as well as network websites and apps.

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Source: recode.net; 9 Sep 2017

Streaming TV Viewers Complete 98% of All Video Ads, According to New Study

The OTT audience also tends to be younger and more affluent

The OTT television landscape is now a full-blown dominant force in the video viewing environment according to a new report from FreeWheel, part of Comcast’s advertising solutions teams.

The OTT viewer is young and affluent: according to FreeWheel’s findings, the median OTT viewer is 23 years younger than linear TV viewers, and OTT streaming households tend to make $10,000 more per year than traditional TV households.

OTT services provide benefits for consumers (a customizable viewing experience when they choose to stream), publishers (a premium platform that reaches non-traditional TV viewers) and marketers (a targetable audience of highly engaged viewers).

“New sources of premium inventory coupled with the ability to align delivery with changing consumption habits allows us to better connect with the consumer and ultimately drive more brand value for our client,” said Jon Anselmo, president at Omnicom Media Group.

“A focus on this area now ensures our clients are ready for a future that one could argue is already here,” he said.

FreeWheel found that OTT viewers, on average, complete 98 percent of video ads as compared to ad completion rates on other devices. Tablet users complete 91 percent of video ads, while smartphone users finish 86 percent.

And because OTT viewers spend more time watching programs, the odds are high that they’re seeing plenty of those ads. About 36 percent of OTT viewership is for visits of at least an hour; of that amount of time, 60 percent is spent streaming live content.

All of this adds up to higher brand metrics across the board. OTT viewers showed higher aided awareness of brands and brand favourability than desktop or mobile users, while mobile users still tend to show higher purchase intent.

“OTT and the increase in dynamic advertising opportunities in the living room represent a very valuable opportunity for our clients to use precision methodologies to reach viewers who have diversified their viewing habits to include OTT,” said Jonathan Bokor, svp and director of precision video at Publicis Media Exchange.

“We believe that the future of TV will marry the best of linear and digital and when OTT is transacting at scale with more standardized measurement, it will realize its full potential for brand marketers,” he said. “Today, despite the measurement challenges, it represents incremental reach and value for our clients, and we continue to seek out creative solutions to tap into these audiences.”

FreeWheel also found that OTT viewers tend to stream TV throughout the day; streaming peaks slightly in the morning as viewers watch morning news reports, but there is a clear peak on all OTT services for primetime programming.

FreeWheel Advisory Services selected a sample of its U.S. clients who represent 95 percent of OTT-driven impressions and combined those findings with data from Nielsen’s Digital Ad Ratings for desktop and mobile statistics to complete this report.

Source: adweek.com; 2 Aug 2017