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August 15, 2022

In Brief—Summer Research Highlights


CTV Scores Commercial Attention Gains

According to TVision, CTV commercial attention levels are rising. Last year, the company reported that the average CTV commercial was seen by only 31% of those in the room, compared to 37% for linear TV. However, this gap has closed considerably in TVision’s first half 2022 results. What accounts for the sudden increase relative to linear TV ad messages? In our latest Total TV Dimensions Alert, which goes exclusively to MDI Direct and Total TV Dimensions subscribers, we take note of just released ad message viewing stats and discuss possible reasons for this improvement. Also included are specific averages for 12 CTV ad platforms, which show major variations among them.


How Did Broadcast & Cable TV Fare In The Upfront?

In the August 2nd TVD Alert, “The 2022-23 Upfront Report,” we released our estimates of ad spending and CPMs for the 2022-23 primetime upfront, which includes trending on primetime ad sales, both overall and by broadcast network, plus average CPM trends for both broadcast and cable.

When it comes to CPMs, the broadcast TV networks averaged a gain of 9.6% for 30-second spots and cable garnered a 6.6% gain, however these increases were well below last year's spectacular hikes due to buyer concerns about the looming threat of an economic recession as well as the shifting of considerable amounts of national ad spend to streaming venues. The linear TV sellers were willing to trade off smaller CPM increases for their linear TV platforms in exchange for increases—often at higher CPMs—for their streaming services. Linear TV still pulls in the big bucks, but maybe the upcoming season's modest sales gains marks the start of that slowdown that many of us are forecasting.

How Much Time Do We Spend With TV Commercials?

The average adult living in a TV home "watches" about 3.7 hours of ad-supported linear and streaming TV daily, including all of the time when the viewer left the room but kept the set on, and all of the time when the "viewer" was present but paying zero attention. Our July 26th TVD Alert also noted that as the average number of commercials per hour is about 34, the typical viewer was "exposed" to 126 ad messages per day, or so the "raw" viewing stats are usually interpreted. But let's dig a bit deeper. We also know that only 35% of the "viewers" watch an average commercial and that they see only 40-50% of its content. Finally, we know that the average commercial length is about 23-24 seconds. So do the math and you will find that the average viewer sees only 44 commercials per day and has eyes-on-screen contact with them for a mere nine minutes.


The Aging Of Cable TV’s Audience

Did you know that in the past 25 years, the median age of all adults rose from 42 to 48 years, but the changes were far greater for viewers of many cable channels? For example, in 1997-98, the median age of MTV’s adult viewers was 28 years, whereas it currently stands at 38 years. Similarly, CNBC’s median age rose by 14 years in this interval. Our July 19th TVD Alert explored this topic in detail.


How Do We Split The TV Viewing Pie?

At present we estimate that the top ten TV content providers for programs viewed on television sets account for almost 32% of all viewing done by adult residents of TV homes. Yep, the leader is still Netflix, but the broadcast networks took four of the top ten spots and two of the top five, so they aren't as dead in the water as some may think. The full TVD Alert report, “How We Get Our TV and Video Content,” issued in June, provides much food for thought plus historical data that only we provide.


Consumer Dimensions 2022 And Beyond, Coming Next Month

Did you know that 35% of adults aged 65+ now have a college/university degree while another 10% have an associate degree and 17% have at least one year of college education? In short, 62% of our "oldsters" have had at least some college training—a far cry from the situation prevailing forty or fifty years ago.

MDI Direct and individual subscribers with a complete rundown on a very important subject: the changing demography of the U.S. population based on the recent census and other governmental sources. Trending for sex, age, marital status, household size, education, income, occupation, regional variations, plus time spent and consumption data are all included, as well as projections where available. For a complete table of content and to pre-order at a special discount rate, visit our website.


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