Commentary

Digital Video Continues Uprising

Video viewing, consumption and ad spend all point north.

Yes, that’s a huge oversimplification -- intentionally so. But as the industry heads into the holidays, here are some key stats underscoring the strength in digital video.

-- Forrester recently reported that more than one-third of online adults in the U.S watch five or more hours of video online each week. Among those 18 to 34, that number is 60%. The corollary to this growth is that more ad money will flow to online video. Forrester predicts online video ad spend will rise from 22.5% of online ad spend in 2014 to 53.8% in 2019.

-- Young people are moving further away from linear viewing. Adults in the 18 to 34 group say they’re more apt to watch new TV shows on services like Hulu rather than via linear TV, according to a study from data technology and research firm Symphony Advanced Media. Millennials only watch live TV 30% of the time, the study said.

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-- Live steaming of video is growing quickly, and has more than doubled year over year, according to FreeWheel’s just-released report on video monetization trends in the third quarter. Sports drove the boost, with 63% of sports digital video viewed live, compared to 17% for news. The sports category also commanded the biggest share -- 31% -- of ads viewed for the quarter.

-- The desktop isn’t the epicenter for video views. Nearly 50% of ad views originated from outside laptops and desktops in the third quarter, with smartphones and other OTT devices driving the shift. Meanwhile, TV Everywhere accounts for 65% of ad views of long-form content, up from 46% a year ago.

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