With new streaming platforms seemingly popping up monthly, the TV viewing landscape is more fragmented than ever. And while there’s much discussion of streaming’s share of total viewing, there is far less discussion of share of viewing with advertising.
Advertisers cannot reach many of these streaming viewers because some platforms, such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, are advertising-free. Other streaming platforms, such as Hulu and HBO Max, offer tiered subscriptions, and the viewer may or may not see ads depending on which tier they pay for.
TVB analyzed linear and streaming viewing using Nielsen’s total use of television and streaming platform ratings, and the results showcase the value linear TV represents to advertisers.
The following key points highlight the strength of linear television to advertisers:
- When looking at the total viewing day, linear television represents 65% of viewing, compared to streaming TV’s 31%.
- Streaming viewing may be 31% of the total viewing day, but that does not translate to ad-supported viewing. Currently most streaming is to non-advertising platforms. Many SVOD platforms have different tiers, some with ads and some without. Nielsen reports one number for these platforms e.g., Hulu total viewing versus Hulu with ads and Hulu without ads. As a result, advertisers do not know the number of subscribers viewing ads available to them.
- Nielsen Gauge numbers do not delineate viewing of advertising on tiered SVOD platforms. The GfK TVB Media Device Study showed that given a choice, more subscriber adults 18+ already paying for a subscription will pay more to get programming without ads on tiered SVOD platforms.
- In order to approximate the number of tiered SVOD subscribers viewing ads, it was assumed that 50% of tiered SVOD subscribers can view ads, which is more conservative than study findings.
- The ad-viewing pie includes: Linear TV, AVOD, and SVOD (assuming 50% have ads). Advertisers need to know the platforms available to them so they can make informed marketing choices; viewing-only numbers can be misleading to advertisers. For example, in May linear TV had 65% of viewing, but since a significant amount of streaming viewing does not have advertising. An analysis of ad viewing during May indicates that linear TV’s ad viewing share is 85%. (TVB has formally requested that Nielsen provide an addendum to their Gauge “Viewing” chart, to also show “Ad Viewing”.)
For more information, please contact Hadassa Gerber, Chief Research Officer, TVB.