October 22, 2008

Dust Off That Old Television

From Ad Age, October 17, 2008
TiVo CEO Says End Is Nigh for TV Ads

TiVo CEO Tom Rogers did everything but hang an "end is near" sign around his neck as he tried to rouse a Saturday morning breakfast crowd at the Association of National Advertisers annual conference with warnings of fast-approaching doom for conventional TV ads.

At issue is whether DVR penetration is about to reach the tipping point at which advertiser-supported TV goes the way of the music industry and newspapers -- a scenario Mr. Rogers warned repeatedly is coming soon...
Ever since the introduction of TiVo about 10 years ago we've been hearing the same bullshit over and over -- tv advertising is dead.

If it's so dead, how come I can't watch a goddamn playoff game without a brain damaging barrage of "0% financing," talking fucking geckos, and "drinkability," whatever the hell that is?

Can I just take a minute here to remind Mr. CEO Rogers that DVR playback and video-on-demand (VOD) together account for only 6% of tv viewing.

Now a little math. When viewing DVR playback, viewers skip commercials 60% of the time. Stay with me here.

6% (DVR viewing) X 60% (incidence of skipping) = 3.6% (spots skipped)

But wait. There's less.

We have to adjust this 3.6% number down because...
  • Some of the 6% of DVR viewing is VOD, not tv programming
  • Top rated shows actually get a viewership lift of 20-25% from time-shifted viewing
So, all this hyperventilating is about no more than 3% of spots being missed by "TiVo-ing". More spots are missed by people logging on to the Ad Contrarian.

Okay, maybe not.

And just one more thing. People with low reading comprehension (especially in the media) keep confusing the drop in network viewing with total viewing. Yes, network viewing is way down. But total TV viewing is up 7.6% since 2000.

Not quite time to kill ourselves yet.

More "advertising is dead" bullshit.

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