DVR Usage - Not What You Think

For TV advertisers concerning digital video recorder (DVR) usage, first it was bad news. Then good news. Then bad news. Now good news.

A study by Frank N. Magid Associates released yesterday now says 55 percent of digital video recorder users stop on occasion while fast forwarding to watch a commercial that catches their attention. All this means TV commercials are effective, entertaining, informative, or have a dominatrix-clad Paris Hilton slithering around on a wet black car.

But I digress.

Also yesterday, research company Accenture released a report saying 40 percent of U.S. homes will have a DVR -- TiVo or otherwise -- by 2009. The good news/bad news in all of this is that viewers by then, according to report, will be skipping about 10 percent of all U.S. television ads by then.

Hmm... That doesn't sound too bad. Weren't the initial estimates that homes with DVRs would skip 70 percent of TV commercials? That bad news made TV advertising executives run to their respective media agencies, product placement agencies, and entertainment marketing agencies looking for answers.



But the answer is this:

There's very little different in the world of TV commercial avoidance. Just about three-quarters of the time, we've always been disinterested in what America's TV advertisers are selling. That's because research has also delved into analyzing current TV viewers without DVRs -- just a regular TV remote. When commercials came on, many viewers flip to another channel, punch the mute button, or walk out of a room.

One more thing. According to research from our friend Steve Sternberg over at Magna Global USA, DVR homes watch more TV than non-DVR homes, and therefore are probably apt to watch more full-length commercials.

So, that's good news for TV advertisers this morning - or whenever they watch news on their TiVos.

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