Live Television Is Still Very Much Kicking


With the growing popularity of Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu, it might seem that live television has been surpassed or even made obsolete by streaming services. A recent study by Omnicom Media Group’s Annalect found that live television is still very relevant, however, even as more consumers are dropping their cable services and viewing more programs online.

In fact, an unexpected 47 percent of the people surveyed said that they preferred live television to other viewing experiences. This is great news as the fall television season gets into full swing. The question on advertisers’ minds, though, is whether television watchers are still being influenced by the commercials in those time slots. 

Surprising Survey Results

A whopping 55 percent of television viewers in the study said they typically discovered new television shows from the commercials placed during their favorite shows. Another 34 percent said that recommendations from friends and family influenced their viewing choices. Twelve percent of live television viewers said they discovered new live programming online.

Over 1,500 people who viewed at least five hours a week of video content on any device were surveyed during the course of this study to create a robust picture of modern content consumers. This is excellent news for the big broadcast networks that are looking to debut a total of 44 new shows this season, including NBC’s “Blindspot,” CBS’s “Supergirl and ABC’s “The Muppets.”

A Great Opportunity for Targeted Marketing

With so many new options for television viewers, the field is going to be tight. Between competition with streaming services and their archives of television programming and the inter-network launch of a thousand ships, each of those 44 new programs is going to be hustling to beat out the others in viewership just to stay afloat.

The small audiences that are likely to be generated from this mass of programs represent a great opportunity for programmatic marketing. Once audiences self-sort into demographics by their favorite new program, it’ll be a simple thing to put a specific message in front of the perfect audience. The emergence of niche television programming may end up being the most interesting thing that has happened to marketing in some time.


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