TV Still Tops In Audience Reach

With pressure from some quarters to put more media dollars into digital, new research from CBS says TV still is the most effective medium when it comes to reach.

Speaking at the Advertising Research Foundation event on Monday, David Poltrack, chief research officer of CBS Corp. and president of CBS Vision. said in looking at 315 brands across multiple consumer categories, the average target reach of these media campaigns was 67%, with the majority of those -- at 53% -- seeing TV ads.

Just 5% witnessed digital ads, with 9% seeing both TV and digital. Data came from Nielsen Total Advertising Ratings for 2013-2014 only, and excludes campaigns that had less than one million online impressions.

These results were consistent across many categories.

For instance, in observing 20 insurance company cross-platform campaigns, the average reach of the target market was 74%, with 62% seeing only the TV ads, 8% witnessing both TV and digital ads, and only 4% seeing digital ads.



In looking at 19 auto company campaigns, the average target reach was 60%, with the majority seeing TV ads (54%); those seeing digital ads were at 2%; and 4% seeing both TV and digital.

Some 76 consumer product goods (CPG) campaigns had an average reach of 59% -- with TV contributing 51%; digital, 3%; and TV and digital seeing 5%.

All this comes as some media executives talk about shifting media dollars to digital, a decision that Poltrack argues against.

“It’s clear that reducing commitment to TV advertising does not make sense and can hurt a brand’s performance,” he says. “If you cut your TV campaign lose reach, lose business, and lose customers.”

Poltrack isn’t discounting digital completely, since CBS has interests in both. He notes that investing in digital marketing as a supplement to the overall advertising campaign makes sense for most marketers.

“A digital campaign on top of a TV campaign does increase the reach,” says Poltrack. “It does it also provide a significant amount of reinforcement for that part of audience that have seen the TV ads... But it’s really supplemental television and it not a replacement for TV.”

1 comment about "TV Still Tops In Audience Reach".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, June 15, 2015 at 2:11 p.m.

    To be fair to digital, it is no surprise that advertisers who spend most of their ad dollars on TV will generate much more reach via TV than with their digital dollars. What would be interesting would be an equal dollar---or GRP----comparison. Does TV deliver more reach than digital when both media are used about equally? I think that this is probably the case, based on some tabs I have seen, but I wonder if Dave's analysis includes any examples along these lines?

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