For example, MoffettNathanson Research says broadcast networks were down 2% in third quarter Nielsen C3 ratings among 18-49 viewers. Cable networks dropped 8%.
In September alone, ad-supported cable networks were down 7% among all viewers -- with English-language broadcast networks virtually flat (off 1%).
But what about advertising demand -- especially for the fourth-quarter scatter market? The jury is out, though many are counting on the period to be strong, especially in comparison to the mostly weak 2014-2015 upfront.
So digital video providers might find another crack in the TV advertising wall as they look for ways to entice traditional TV marketers, via either soft or hard sells.
Former Hulu executive Jason Kilar’s new digital video company Vessel looks to price pre-roll commercials -- perhaps the premium digital video format/platform for marketers -- at around $30 to $50 CPMs, with overall out-of-pocket packages in the $250,000-$500,000 range.
That range is good for digital video providers, even though prices have dropped somewhat recently t0 around $35 to $40 -- about the same as charged by broadcast networks.
While the pricing against TV is comparable, that is not Vessel’s main effort, according to The Wall Street Journal. The company is thinking more about targeting YouTube, though getting dollars intended for traditional TV players would surely be a nice coup. Vessel is looking to launch next month.
All this occurs as media agencies increasingly look to revamp some TV media planning -- in terms of the rough percentages that clients should spend on digital video.
Not that long ago, certain media executives looked at pushing clients to shift 15% of TV dollars to digital video. Now Omnicom Media Group believes some of its clients should shift as much as 25% of their video budgets.
If you think this sounds like something media agencies did in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s concerning growing cable networks, you wouldn’t be wrong. Media agencies then talked about setting aside 15% of TV dollars for up-and-coming cable networks.
After that period, as cable’s penetration of TV homes climbed steadily, those networks saw an almost too easy, smiling-ear-to-ear, run of ever-higher ad revenues.
New digital video platforms can only hope for a similar performance -- complete with online selfie grins.