From the MNTN Slack – The Numbers Tell All

A scroll happy look at the latest streaming stats, straight from our team to you.

From the MNTN Slack – The Numbers Tell All

6 Min Read

Mel.Yap (Senior Content Marketing Manager) – Hey guys, I was doing some research for a blog post I’m writing…I found this on WARC. This article is part of the March 2021 Spotlight US series, “Media strategies for a shifting US landscape.” This was data from Q4, 2020 that found 80% of Americans stream, and almost a third don’t watch linear TV at all – they stream only. Does anyone have any supporting evidence or numbers that they’ve found recently?

Tim.Edmundson (Director, Content Marketing) – That’s a crazy stat, one in three only stream now. I think this is starting to sink in with traditional TV networks. I just read a stat that NBCUniversal expects their TV viewership to be split 50/50 in just two years…you have to wonder if if they’re underestimating.

Hooman.Javidan.Nejad (Director, Performance Marketing) – Very interesting stats! It seems that some of the savvy advertisers have shifted media budgets accordingly. According to the IAB’s annual report which was launched at last week’s 2021 NewFronts, nearly three quarters (73%) of CTV buyers report shifting media budgets from broadcast and cable to CTV. Advertisers spent an average of $20 million on CTV in 2020, and 35% expect to increase that amount in 2021.

If 80% of Americans stream, streaming TV advertising seems to be a must have for most of the brands. Check out this article from Adweek which shows Connected TV drove massive growth in digital video spend in 2020 and that will continue in 2021. It makes me wonder if you are a DTC brand trying to reach the population under 30 – do you even need to bother with considering traditional TV at all?

Stephen.Graveman (Content Marketing Manager) – I once heard a theory that COVID—19 has accelerated our trends ahead by about five years. Remote work, new movies skipping theaters and going straight to on-demand at home, etc. All things that were gaining popularity before the pandemic that exploded during COVID. CTV’s dominance and popularity with advertisers sounds like another one. Things were trending this way but 2020-2021 was the year that showed it’s a real challenger to broadcast TV.

Check out this recent piece in The Wall Street Journal on the rise of CTV. The CIO for Omnicon Media Group: “You’re going to see a double-digit shift to digital, including streaming. What Covid taught us is the shift to streaming, while we thought it would probably take a longer time, happened really fast. Now both ourselves and our clients need to react to that shift.” 

Tim.Edmundson – That’s an interesting read and I think that quote sums up the current vibe among TV networks and advertisers alike: they knew this was coming, but didn’t realize how quickly it would occur.

Hooman.Javidan.Nejad – Nice find Stephen! During COVID, people spent more that in their homes and streaming TV time rose drastically for sure. In addition to that lot of people moved to other cities or the suburbs cause they were able to work remotely. Was wondering if the higher rates of moves and re-location was also responsible for cable subscribers not to re-new once moved and switching to streaming instead.

Stephen.Graveman – That’s an excellent point. It’s probably easier to “cut the cord” if you’re disconnecting for a move. Some people may have noticed they don’t even miss it (this is what happened to me a few years ago when I moved from my hometown). 

Tim.Edmundson – Funny you say that – I moved back in 2019 and cut the cord on cable simultaneously. It just didn’t seem necessary anymore since I was paying for internet and had streaming subscriptions already.

Stephen.Graveman – And that was 2019! I don’t know if we can even count the number of streaming services that have shown up since then.

Tim.Edmundson – Seriously – I think I’ve added two or three since then just for live sports. Ad-supported services too! I snagged the ad-supported tier for Paramount+ so I could watch Champion’s League soccer, and ad-supported Peacock for Premier League games. I figured I could save extra cash by going with the ad versions, since I already had a number of full-price subscriptions

Stephen.Graveman – Same here. I think that’s the interesting thing about streaming services over the last few years. We’ve seen a rise in ad-tier streaming services and a large number of consumers embracing them. Everyone I know pays for the ad-supported tier of Hulu, for instance. I think that caught some people by surprise, including advertisers….and networks. At this point, I think it’s obvious that advertisers can’t afford to wait around any longer. The party is growing by the day, and no one notices the last person to a party.

Tim.Edmundson – Unless it’s to tell them “you’re late”

Stephen.Graveman – Ha! Exactly.

Mel.Yap – I’m all for ad-supported networks – for example I think I’m only paying $2.99/mth now for my Hulu subscription. Everyone seems to want something for nothing…if having a few (relevant ads) dropped here and there means I pay less for my monthly subscriptions, then so be it. There has to be a trade off.

Hooman.Javidan.Nejad – People might think of Netflix, Disney+, or other subscription services when they think streaming TV, but it’s ad-supported content that dominates total streaming viewership. Nearly ¾ of 18+ streaming viewers watch ad-supported services.

Mel.Yap – Nice find! Deloitte’s annual media trends survey found that 60% of consumers are happy to sit through limited ads for cheaper streaming services. they would accept a light ad load of no more than six minutes per hour in return for a reduction in the monthly fees.

Stephen.Graveman – These stats are fascinating but make sense to me. Also, I can personally attest to buying things I never heard of before thanks to streaming ads.