Still Loyal To TV Yet Highly Distracted

It wasn't long ago when marketers and entertainment executives dictated how, when, and where we watched our favorite television shows. But the advent of the digital age has shifted the power to consumers giving us more options for viewing than ever before.

Nowadays we're watching movies on our cell phones, streaming clips on our computers, and watching our favorite shows commercial-free on DVR. And it's no surprise that these evolving viewing habits are also changing our expectations of how we consume -- and engage with -- our favorite shows.

Our agency was curious about Moms' TV viewing habits and, more importantly, how their involvement in social media affects both their consumption of TV content and loyalty to TV programs. In April, we interviewed 1,851 Moms to understand how, when, and where they view TV content, and what this might mean for marketers.

Moms' Viewing Habits

Live viewing isn't dead. While Moms' TV viewing habits reflect the digital age (60% of Moms surveyed watch shows online or via DVRs), the greatest percentage of Moms (64%) still watch their favorite shows live.



Though 52% of the Moms surveyed reported being stay-at-home Moms and 20% work part-time, only 6% reported being most likely to watch TV during the day (11 a.m. - 4 p.m.). In fact, Moms are most likely to watch TV during evening and primetime hours (5 p.m. - 10 p.m.) and roughly two out of three Moms watch their favorite shows live.

Moms are distracted viewers. 70% reported doing other things while they watched their favorite shows, whether folding laundry, cooking dinner, or playing with their kids.

Moms are multi-tasking electronically. They are blogging, catching up on email, visiting social networking sites, and 35% report they are visiting social networking sites completely unrelated to the show they are watching.

Moms are weighing in with others on programs as they watch. 30% of Moms in our survey report that they post on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites while they watch TV live.

Engagement Is Key

Moms want to engage but aren't likely to do it alone. The vast majority (79%) of Moms indicated interest in interacting with show producers, actors, hosts, or other fans online, yet just one in five have taken the initiative to reach out on their own.

Moms use online platforms to enhance their connection to their favorite shows. Two out of three Moms said that they are likely to visit the website of their favorite shows, while just under half (44%) reported using social networking sites to share their thoughts and feedback about the show.

Moms want to engage on social networking sites. While just one in three Moms said that they visit the social networking sites of their favorite shows, roughly half indicated interest in using these sites to interact with hosts/actors or producers online.

Implications for Marketers

Moms are passionate about the shows they watch and with this passion comes a desire to engage. To tap into this, marketers should consider ways to use online media to help Moms feel more connected by delivering unique experiences that the Moms cannot get from viewing the TV programs alone. Social media platforms, used widely by Moms to interact with one another, provide an ideal avenue to bring fans and hosts together and create that much-desired connection.

Why should marketers care? Enhancing and deepening the relationship with the viewer has the potential to translate to better viewing habits, increased viewership and stronger brand advocacy. In fact, if given the opportunity to interact on social networking sites with hosts, actors, or producers of their favorite TV shows nearly half of Moms surveyed said they would feel more engaged with the show (48%), one in four said they would be more likely to watch the show live, and one in five said that they would watch the show more frequently or that they would be more likely to recommend the show to a friend.

How can entertainment marketers take advantage of viewers' desire to connect? Make the first move and ask your audience. Not only must you understand what social media platforms your viewers are already using to connect, you need know how they want to engage across these platforms. Ask a Mom for her feedback on how to better inform your social media engagement strategy. Not only will you give your viewers what they want, you'll build viewer loyalty along the way.

3 comments about "Still Loyal To TV Yet Highly Distracted".
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  1. Stephanie Piche from Mingle Media TV, May 12, 2010 at 12:25 p.m.

    Excellent article!!

  2. Emily Foshee from Emily Foshee Copywriting, May 13, 2010 at 1:47 p.m.


    Kudos on a fantastic job! I was surprised that the majority of Moms still watch their favorite shows live...even though they're multi-tasking while they try to "relax!" I'm not surprised Moms want to interact with their favorite show's writers, producers, etc. Your advice to marketers re/ asking Mom for her feedback on how to better inform their social media strategy was spot on. Identifying Mommy Bloggers that represent a show's target audience would be a great place to start.

  3. Ngoc T from Iowa, May 28, 2010 at 11 a.m.

    Nice article. More please.

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