More Than a Third of US TV Consumption is Now Online

31 December 2007

NEW YORK: Findings from State of the Media Democracy, a new-media survey by Deloitte & Touche, were leaked late last week to The Hollywood Reporter. The data, which will not become officially available until next month, underscore the rise and rise of online media platforms.

Based on an online sample of 2,081 people during the last week of October, the study shows that 38% of respondents watch TV online; 36% use their cellphones as an entertainment source; and 45% create online content such as websites, music, videos and blogs.

But it is the pace of growth that astonishes. In a similar survey conducted only eight months earlier, usage of cellphones as entertainment devices was just 24% - a leap of fifty percentage points.

And there are marked variances by age group.

The current figure rose to 62% among millennials [those in the 13-24 age group] compared to 46% in the earlier study. While among Generation X consumers [age group 25-41], the number grew to from 29% to 47%.

Viewers of TV online rose in similarly spectacular fashion - from 23% in the previous study to 38% - of whom a majority (69%) said they watched or listened to consumer-generated content.

Other key findings reveal that . . .

  • 54% of consumers said they socialize via networking sites, chat rooms or message boards, and 45% said they maintain a profile on a social network.

  • 85% of consumers still find TV advertising to have the most impact on their buying habits, although online ads come second best with 65% saying they have the most impact, ahead of magazines at 63%.

  • On the web, search engine result ads are the most effective, gaining 78% of the vote, followed by interactive ads (62%), banners (60%), pre-rolls (31%), post-rolls (19%) and embedded ads (17%).

  • 67% of consumers said they would willingly be exposed to more online ads if they could receive free content they found valuable; but 65% opined that any type of internet ad was more intrusive than ads in newspapers and magazines. 37% said they would rather pay for online content than be exposed to advertisements.

  • 59% said they pay greater attention to magazine ads than any type of internet advertising, and 55% said they pay greater attention to newspaper ads.
Advises Ken August, vice chairman of Deloitte's media and entertainment practice: "For advertisers one of the conclusions is you don't make decisions to advertise either on television or the internet when you want to hit all the demographics, but rather you need to have a multiplatform strategy.

"It shouldn't be an 'either/or' proposition."

Data sourced from AdWeek (USA); additional content by WARC staff