Lisa Weisman | March 30, 2022
As a media buyer, the first question clients always ask is whether “TV is still an option to consider, or do we need to go all digital?” What was once an easy “Yes,” is a bit more complicated now that the dynamics of TV have changed. Still, the answer remains the same - "Yes, TV is an option."
Today, digital and social media reign supreme. Less from an advertising reach standpoint, but more from our way of life.
Smartphones are never more than a foot away from most of us, and Gen Z and Millennials can multi-task digitally in ways Gen X and Baby Boomers couldn’t imagine when we were their age. They get their news from Instagram, their entertainment from YouTube and all their social interactions on Snapchat, TikTok and a multitude of messaging apps. And at the end of the day, most still choose television as their main source for information and entertainment.
People may watch TV differently through streaming or via multiple devices, but advertisers still get the greatest reach from the most traditional of sources. Nielsen’s latest February 2022 Gauge report showed that more than 61% of TV viewership still comes from broadcast and cable TV.
And that’s only one reason I still answer that first question with a confident “Yes!” Here are three more:
Television continues to draw large audience ratings for live events. For example, the 2022 Super Bowl drew an audience of 112 million people, and the majority (99.2 million viewers) watched live on NBC. Despite all the digital distractions at our disposal and unprecedented access to multiple streaming services, television continues to own the largest piece of the viewership pie.
Shows such as The Bachelor, Survivor and This is Us continue to achieve high weekly audience ratings, and over 85% of viewership is live rather than recorded and watched later. This is critical for an advertiser who doesn’t want their ad skipped or fast forwarded. Advertisers also can ‘cross-promote’ their ad on live TV with other social or digital efforts, adding content to the overall experience.
In a recent study done by tvScientific, ads on television sets (whether streaming or traditional) garner higher ad recall. Viewers remember ads more than 46% of the time, according to the study, compared to other tactics that are far less effective. Furthermore, audiences claim that they find ads on TV or streaming less annoying than ads on social media, websites, or in mobile games, all of which provide more ‘credibility’ to the medium.
Media is more fragmented than ever. With so many options for advertisers, the challenge is identifying the right tactics, to reach the right audience at the right time. Analytics can provide so many insights to advertisers - best time of day or week, best creative to resonate and best device to reach a prospect. But what none of them can do better than television is guarantee a large reach within specific time frame ‘live.’
Television has changed. But television isn’t dead. It’s healthier than it has ever been and continues to be a strategic option for advertisers who want to garner mass reach and see effective results.
All the analytics in the world can’t compete with a known entity. A ‘live’ TV event will draw a larger audience than any Kardashian live stream, athlete blog or political tweet. That’s because we still look forward to big events when everyone is watching. We want to be part of that community - and we want to watch it when it happens on television.
The Grammy’s are live on CBS on April 3. Will you be watching live? Or scrolling through your feed instead?
Yup, that’s what I thought.
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Lisa Weisman is a Broadcast Buying Supervisor at Falls & Co. She formerly worked on the client side at Progressive Insurance & Sherwin-Williams and worked in Chicago at GSD&M on the DreamWorks account. Little fun fact…Lisa’s first job out of college was at Wyse Advertising, now Falls & Co.