If you are one who believes the future of commercial communications is just about digital, interactive new media, your thinking is already out of date. It's time to go back to basics and reexamine the evidence for conventional television.
David Graham is one of the brightest, best and most-respected TV analysts. His latest work concludes that TV viewing in the UK, already at a high level, will increase by 5% over the next five years. Furthermore he also concludes that TV viewing by 18-34 year olds will also increase by 5% by 2012.
The key factors that will bring this about are: -
1. More older people
2. Older people getting more channels
3. Watch-anytime technology
4. Massive growth of in-home PVRs
5. iPlayer downloads
And it looks as though this increased viewing will lead to an increase in viewing advertisements too.
Tess Alps' recent research, covered at last week's ISBA conference, shows that the easy access to PVRs in multi-channel homes allows viewers access to more of the programs they specifically want to watch. Even if you then extract from these recordings those who never get around to viewing what they recorded -- and also extract those who do view them, but fast-forward through the recorded advertisements -- the result is an increase in the viewing of commercials.
(Thanks to David and Tess.)
So the question is no longer what happens to television. Instead we have to concentrate on making quality programs, creating innovative marketing to ensure viewers know what and where to watch, and then optimize better media scheduling by media buyers to deliver the commercial audiences that are out there and that advertisers require.
We have to tune in and turn on to conventional TV; it's today's and tomorrow's medium.