Everyone is struggling to adapt to the new realities of life with the coronavirus. One of the big side effects is a spike in stay-at-home viewing of both ad-supported (AVOD) and subscription-supported (SVOD) video. Changes in consumption are being strongly influenced by the suspension of live sports and the postponement of this summer's Olympics. In addition, billions of dollars of ad spending are being reviewed - either to be reallocated elsewhere currently, eliminated or banked for the future.
A lot of valuable data and insights are being provided by industry leaders that helps us better understand these rapidly-shifting times. I will be trying to curate as many of the links to all of it as possible on a daily basis on this Coronavirus Video Industry Research hub, which is part of our sister site, VideoNuze iQ (where lots of other great industry data is also available).
If you have data or insights to share, please send them to me, along with appropriate links and any other suggestions you might have. I'll be contributing interviews with industry leaders as well. Hopefully this hub can assist all of us in getting through these challenging times.
Extreme Reach has released its Q4 and full year 2019 Video Benchmarks Report, finding, among other things, that connected TV (CTV) has settled into a range of approximately 50% share of all video ad impressions. In Q4 ’19 CTV impression share landed at 47%, slightly down sequentially from 51% in Q3 ’19 (also its peak quarter for the year), but slightly up YOY from 44% in Q4 ’18.
Three months ago, when I reviewed ER’s Q3 ’19 benchmarks report, I wondered whether CTV share would step up in the Q4 holiday season since cord-cutting was accelerating and new services were launching. But it looks like the answer was no, at least for now.
Topics: Extreme Reach
These days there’s no shortage of SVOD services to choose from, with each one seeing to grab a slice of viewers’ monthly spending. And with cord-cutting on the rise, undoubtedly there IS some spending freeing up as viewers cancel their pricey pay-TV services.
But two major industry trends should keep SVOD providers from being overly optimistic about replicating anything close to Netflix’s ad-free hockey stick subscriber growth over the past decade: first, the prevalence of password sharing and second, a tolerance for advertising related to “subscription fatigue” that the proliferation of SVOD services is engendering. New data released this week by Hub Entertainment Research and The Trade Desk underscores the extent of both.
Three key video ad metrics showed ongoing stability in Q3 ’19 according to Extreme Reach’s latest Video Benchmarks Report. Specifically, premium publishers (direct sellers of ad inventory) maintained 80% share of video ad impressions (compared to 82% and 83% in the prior 2 quarters), while media aggregators’ share was 20% (compared to 18% and 17% in the prior 2 quarters).
Given this, it’s no surprise that 30-second spots, TV’s traditional workhorse unit, accounted for 66% of video ad volume in Q3 (comparable to 64% and 69% in prior 2 quarters). 15-second spots accounted for 32% of video ad volume (in line with 33% and 28% from prior 2 quarters).
Topics: Extreme Reach
If you’ve ever waited for an ad to play while watching something online, only to have the ad never end up playing, you’re not alone. According to Conviva’s latest quarterly State of Streaming report, 39.6% of all streaming video ads completely failed to play in Q3 ’19. The vast majority, 35.7%, were ad start failures, with exits before the ad started comprising the remaining 3.9%. In addition, the average ad start time was 1.14 seconds and the ad buffering ratio was .77%.
Ad failures and delays disrupt the user experience and cause abandonment, both harmful to ad-supported video businesses. As Conviva points out, ad-supported video is already an important business model, and will further grow as viewers cap the number of ad-free streaming services they subscribe to.
A new survey from Hub Entertainment Research found that 63% of respondents identified “online” as the main source of their favorite TV show, vs. 35% who said it is their pay-TV set-top box. The 28 point gap is a big jump from the 2018 survey which found a 56%-44% divide in favor of online.
No surprise, within online, Netflix is by far the number one source of respondents’ favorite shows. Netflix was identified by 34% of respondents, followed by 10% for Amazon Prime Video, 8% for Hulu and 4% for “other online.”
Hub didn’t provide an age breakout for any of the above data, but a separate study released today by Common Sense Media found that for 8-12 year olds, YouTube is by far the most used video service (53%), with Netflix next (27%) and YouTube Kids (7%), Amazon Prime Video (3%) and Hulu (2%) following. An interesting article in today’s WSJ helps explain the appeal of YouTube to teens.
Topics: Hub Research
Half of video ad impressions were delivered on connected TV devices in Q2 ’19, according to Extreme Reach’s latest Video Benchmark Report, which is based on the company’s AdBridge ad server. That was up just a bit from Q1 ’19, but up significantly from Q2 ’18 when CTV accounted for 38% of ad impressions. Other devices’ video ad impressions shares dropped year over year: Mobile from 31% to 25%, Desktop from 23% to 16% and Tablet from 9% to 6%. Unclassified took a small percentage as well.
Topics: Extreme Reach
Streaming services have long been linked to cord-cutting, and new research from Manatt and Vorhaus Advisors provides another window into the relationship. Among those likely to cut the cord in the next year, nearly half (44%) said that after doing so they would rely on SVOD services like Netflix or Hulu.
And when asked their reasons for going without pay-TV service, “too expensive’ topped the list of reasons cited (as expected) with 47%, followed by “I don’t watch enough TV to make it worth it” (30%). But then the next 3 reasons all relate to the strength of streaming services: “I am satisfied with online streaming options on my TV,” (24%) “I have enough entertainment options on the Internet” (23%) and I can watch the TV shows and movies I like on the Internet” (21%).
Topics: Vorhaus Advisors
Video ad spending remains strong on the biggest social platforms, while connected TVs are gaining, according to a new Pixability survey of ad agency executives. 90% of agencies are running video ad campaigns on Facebook, followed by 88% on YouTube and Instagram. Hulu was fourth with 80%. Roku was at 58%, ahead of Twitter (42%) and Snapchat (36%). Amazon Fire TV lagged at 27%. Linear TV is used by 76% of ad executives surveyed.
All platforms look poised for continued success with 63% of agency executives saying they’ll increase video ad spending in 2020 by 1-10%, and another 20% saying they'll increase spending by over 10%.
Streaming video hours were up 130% in Q2 ’19 vs. Q2 ’18 according to Conviva’s new State of the Streaming TV Industry report. Connected TVs led with 143% growth, followed by mobile (up 109%) and PC (up 75%). CTVs also led with 28.8 minutes of watch time per play, followed by PC with 15.1 minutes and mobile with 12 minutes.
Overall, CTVs accounted for 54% of all viewing hours in Q2 ’19, followed by mobile (23%), PC (14%) and others (8%). Roku continues to dominate the CTV category, with 43% of time viewing. Fire TV was a distant second at 18%, followed by Apple TV at 10% and Xbox at 9%. Roku also had the highest year-over-year growth rate in viewing hours, at 173%, with Fire TV next at 145%, and then Apple TV at 129%.
Nearly half (49%) of online video ad impressions in Q1 ’19 were delivered on connected TVs according to new data from Extreme Reach’s Q1 '19 Video Benchmark Report, which is based on the company’s proprietary ad server. CTVs’ 49% share in Q1 ’19 was up from its 31% share in Q1 ’18. Every other device saw declines in video ad impressions year over year: Mobile from 33% to 25%, Desktop from 24% to 17% and Tablet from 11% to 7%.
As Extreme Reach notes in its analysis, there are multiple tailwinds helping drive up CTV ads: Over two-thirds of U.S. households owned a CTV device by end of 2018, ad-supported services like Hulu, Pluto TV, Tubi, The Roku Channel, etc. are proliferating and growing their usage. vMVPDs like YouTube TV, Hulu with Live TV, etc are expanding their subscribers and viewing times with linear TV consumption. These and other factors are growing CTVs’ supply, while enhanced targeting/attribution are enticing buyers.
Topics: Extreme Reach
There are now approximately 31 million “cord never” adults in the U.S. - people who have never paid for a traditional pay-TV service - according to MRI-Simmons’s latest Cord Evolution research. This represents 12% of the U.S. population, an increase from 9% that MRI-Simmons found in 2017. Cord nevers have a median age of 33 and household income of $52,800 (up from $41,500 two years ago).
With the massive explosion of streaming options, it is easier than ever for viewers to avoid becoming a pay-TV subscriber. It is even more alluring for younger viewers for whom streaming has played a bigger part in their lives and who are less wedded to traditional channel surfing and linear viewing.
The biggest U.S. cable companies added nearly 2.9 million broadband subscribers in 2018 according to a new report from Leichtman Research Group. That was up from 2.7 million subscribers added in 2017.
Cable-delivered broadband continues to dominate, with 65% share, compared to telcos’ 35%, the biggest gap since Q3 ’03. The biggest telcos collectively lost over 470K broadband subscribers in 2018, slightly better than the 620K they lost in 2017. The top providers combined now have 98.2 million broadband subscribers.
Categories: Broadband ISPs
Topics: Leichtman Research Group
Extreme Reach has released its Q4 and full year 2018 Video Advertising Benchmarks report, which further reinforces the ascendance of connected TV (CTV) viewing and monetization. Importantly, the ER research is the first I’ve seen that highlights how CTVs are actually helping 30-second ads gain share of impressions vs. ads of other durations. This is a critical development as it helps re-energize TV advertising’s traditional workhorse unit that has been under pressure from all corners.
First, CTV’s share of video ad impressions jumped to 38% in 2018, up from 16% in 2017. CTV video ads are benefiting from a perfect storm: rapid device adoption, launch of numerous apps by premium content providers, emphasis on ad-supported business models with the exception of a few SVOD or hybrid stalwarts (e.g. Netflix, Amazon, etc.) and heavy investment in CTV ad tech stacks. All of this is leading ad buyers to rapidly embrace CTV as a must-have in their campaigns. (And by the way as just one indicator of how accessible CTVs have become, I just noticed that Amazon is selling its Toshiba Fire TV 32-inch model for just $100 today only. Yes, you read that right.)
Topics: Extreme Reach
The Diffusion Group has released new data showing that Roku users have the lowest levels of traditional pay-TV subscriptions and the highest level of cord-cutting. According to TDG, 64% of Roku box users and 66% of Roku stick users subscribe to pay-TV. 30% of Roku box users and 26% of Roku stick users are cord-cutters.
For all adult broadband users, 73% continue to subscribe to pay-TV, with just 21% saying they’re cord-cutters. Other devices measured, including Fire TV, Apple TV and Chromecast all had slightly higher levels of pay-TV subscriptions and similar to lower levels of cord-cutting.
Connected TV devices and set-top box VOD now account for 57% of all premium video views in the U.S. according to FreeWheel’s Q2 Video Monetization Report (VMR) released today. It is the first time CTV and STB VOD have driven more than half of premium video views, and is up from 49% in Q2 ’17.
However, the big reason for the jump is due to CTV, which jumped from 29% of all premium video views in Q2 ’17 to 41% in Q2 ’18. STB VOD actually declined over the same period from 20% to 16%. I’ve believed for a long time that CTV viewing of SVOD and other ad-supported on-demand OTT programming would eventually chip away at traditional STB-delivered VOD. The Q2 results appear to show this now occurring.
Major SVOD services’ popularity continues to expand, with new research from Leichtman Research Group finding that 69% of U.S. households now subscribe to either Netflix, Amazon Prime and/or Hulu. That’s up from 64% last year and 47% in 2014.
Also noteworthy is the rise of multi SVOD service households. LRG found that among SVOD households, 63% now access more than 1 SVOD service, which is up from 38% in 2015. That means that 43% of U.S. households now access more than one SVOD service, more than double the 20% rate from 2015.
Topics: Leichtman Research Group
Over 1 billion connected TV (CTV) devices are now active globally according to Strategy Analytics’ just released “Global Connected TV Device Vendor Share: Q2 2018” report. Strategy Analytics said almost 60% of devices are smart TVs while the remainder are players like Roku, Fire TV and Chromecast accounting for the remainder.
Topics: Strategy Analytics
Extreme Reach has released its Q2 ’18 Video Advertising Benchmarks report, further supporting the rise of connected TV viewing. In the quarter, CTV accounted for 38% of ad impressions, more than double their share of 18% in Q2 ’17. Mobile followed with a 30% share, down slightly from a 33% share in Q2 ’17. Desktop and table both slumped further, with the former dropping from 35% to 23% and the latter dropping from 15% to 9%.
Topics: Extreme Reach
Magid released highlights from its new Media Consumption Survey 2018 at VidCon last week, including unsurprisingly, that cord-cutting intent is continuing to rise, especially among millennials. 7.9% of pay-TV subscribers age 18-64 years-old said they were “extremely likely” to cancel their service in the next 12 months, up from 6.1% in 2017. But 14% of millennials said they plan to do so. Even 10% of live sports enthusiasts said they are “very likely” to cut the cord.