Commercial media consumption drops 15% since 2015 | WARC | The Feed
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Commercial media consumption drops 15% since 2015
The IPA’s most recent Touchpoints research into the commercial media landscape finds Britons’ media usage declining and fragmenting.
Why it matters
Effectively, it’s getting harder to reach people through commercial media. While this research doesn’t go deeply into what people are watching, it comes at a time in which previously subscription-only streamers like Netflix and Disney are building out advertising operations that brands hope might shift the needle back to growth.
“Looking forward, while consumers’ time with curated commercial media has decreased overall, I think things are set to change again in the coming months and years, particularly with the increasing shift of SVoD players such as Netflix and Disney+ towards part ad-funded revenue models,” says Simon Frazier, IPA’s head of TouchPoints Marketing & Data Innovation.
What’s going on?
- The average consumption of commercial media in 2022 is 51 minutes less than it was in 2015, a decrease of 15%.
- This means a fall from 5 hours and 35 minutes to 4 hours and 44 mins per day.
- Overall, UK adults (aged 16+) now spend almost as much time on a smartphone (32%) as watching a TV set (39%) with no other device taking a higher share than 10%.
- The dominance of the smartphone is fuelled by 16-34s who now spend 54% of their curated commercial media time on their phones.
Why the drop?
Young consumers are at the heart of the change, says the IPA. Sixteen to 34-year-olds have increased their usage by 0.7% since 2020, but their daily commercial media consumption has decreased by 22% over seven years:
- 2015: average of 6 hours and 15 minutes
- 2022: average of 4 hours and 53 minutes
Meanwhile, older consumers (35-54s and over 55s) showed only single-digit fluctuations over that time.
What they are watching is also changing, the research finds:
“Last year there was a 52% correlation in the commercial media usage behaviours of 16-34s and over 55s in terms of reach. This year, this correlation has dropped by almost a third (29%) to 37%, down from the 39% seen in 2020 pre-lockdown, revealing that the different generations of consumers are reverting to their pre-Covid media habits.”
Only OOH consistently delivers over 90% weekly reach across all age groups, leaving high reach to a traditional advertising medium.
This lack of crossover can be seen in the distribution of digital platforms to non-digital. Among younger consumers, digital properties dominate the top five; among older 55+ consumers, traditional TV channels (with the exception of Facebook) dominate the top five:
- 16-34s spend 80% of their commercial media time with digital media platforms, a 10% increase since pre-pandemic 2020.
- Among 35-54s, 52% of their commercial media time is spent with digital platforms.
- Those aged 55+ are still spending the vast majority of their curated commercial media time with non-digital platforms and only 28% of their time with digital platforms.
Sourced from the IPA
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