Millennials Enjoy Traditional TV Shows, But In Digital

Are millennials the key to future TV use?

Speaking at a ARF OTTxScience event in Los Angeles on Thursday, Jeff Bader, president of program planning, strategy and research, NBC Entertainment, points to “Law & Order: SVU” and “This is Us.”

On linear TV, the average age of an “SVU” viewer is 61. But those viewing it on digital platform? 33. For “This is Us,” its linear TV average age is 55. On digital? Also 33.

Add this in: As many as 55% of Americans sometimes use a mobile device to watch TV, up from 36% a year ago, says PwC. And we know who over indexes on a lot of mobile devices: young TV consumers.

Results are the same for many established broadcast networks shows. They skew around 60 years old -- but on digital, viewers are under 40. The problem: All this content competes with YouTube, Facebook, social media, video games, and all things digital.

So if networks are looking at what content to program — says 20 years from now — would it be crime procedural dramas, medical drama shows, legal drama programs and singing competitions?



Yes. But viewing will also come in shorter forms. Two, three, five, or 10-minute episodes on new digital media platforms.

Other research shows that 72% of millennials and 70% of GenXers that subscribe to an OTT platforms, also subscribe to Netflix.  That means young consumers are still choosing traditional TV programming.

But millennials are in control. That goes for MTV Networks and others networks, too.

MTV  follows their lead. It recently announced a new version of its iconic reality series “Real World,” relaunching on Facebook Watch, the social-media’s video platform.

Facebook has big social-media scale, MTV does not. But there is a wrinkle: In the deal with Facebook Watch, the new seasons will not air on TV. What does this mean? That digital is programming to millennials.

2 comments about "Millennials Enjoy Traditional TV Shows, But In Digital".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, October 19, 2018 at 12:09 p.m.

    Yep, millennials are the future of TV all right and boy will they just eat up fare like "Law and Order" on their smart phones and, eventially, their smart eye glasses, wrist watches and who knows what else. Yep, and as we all know, the percentage of millennial viewers---who are now reached by network shows  via digital means has grown by leaps and bounds---it's probably as much as 2-3% of the average telecast's audience. In no time at all the broadcast network's median age stats will  go from 58-60 years to a mere 33 years. Yep, millennials will, indeed rule the media world and, in the process, they will save TV. Yep.

  2. Suzanne Sell from Independent replied, October 19, 2018 at 7:41 p.m.

    Not sure I understand what point you’re trying to make. Like all generations before them, millennials will age. Their eyesight and hearing will worsen, and their backs and knees will hurt. Sure, they’ll continue to use a variety of devices to access content, but their viewing screens will get bigger and bigger—and I’d be very surprised if they actually find 10-minute series episodes to be fulfilling. Broadcast, cable, digital—they’re merely pipelines, and they’re popping up in such numbers that there will be another age group of consolidation. And another generation will have new sets of toys to play with. 

Next story loading loading..