More Viewers Watch Syndie Shows Live

In a growing DVR world, syndication is again making the case for delivering plenty of young viewers to advertisers -- especially viewers who watch live commercials.

Young adult 18-34 households have more DVRs in their homes than all U.S. TV homes with DVRs -- DVR penetration among 18-34 viewers is at 40%, with all U.S. TV homes at a 36% number, per the Syndicated Network Television Association.

But at the same time, the SNTA says there is still less time-shifting with syndication shows and commercials.

For example, 83% of 18-34 viewers watch syndication sitcoms live, versus 53% for network prime-time sitcoms. A similar trend is found with commercial playback: 86% of 18-34 viewers watch commercials in syndication sitcoms live versus 53% for network sitcoms.

SNTA says the trend is similar when it comes to dramas: 82% of 18-34 viewers watch syndication dramas live versus 40% with network prime-time dramas. Commercial playback of drama in syndication among 18-34 viewers is at 69% versus 43% for network dramas.

Overall, the SNTA says syndicated shows are still well over-indexed among 18-34 viewers versus their prime-time network viewing.

King of the Hill/Fox

Shows such as "King of the Hill" get a best 307 index for their syndication run. "Family Guy" comes next, at a 303 index, with "South Park" at a 301 number. "The Office" (280) and "Scrubs" (279) are also high on the list. "Tyler Perry's 'House of Payne'" scores a 214 index.

SNTA also notes that getting 18-34s are cheaper than for network television. The SNTA has released these results just before the upfront advertising market begins to move.

"This is coming out now to say don't forget about us," says Brad Adgate, senior vice president and corporate media director for Horizon Media. "This also results from the bigger discussion of broadcast versus cable. They [syndication] are the squeaky wheel."

One sticking point for some advertisers comes down to the many syndication shows (especially those outside the bigger-rated top 10, top 20 shows) that run in a variety of different time periods.

This, in turn, has hindered syndication shows from offering up a key metric for marketers.

"At some point, syndication's biggest Achilles heel was that they couldn't give you a 'share' [number]," says Adgate. But he adds that with more people time-shifting, share becomes less of a factor for TV advertisers.

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