The stock market for media companies is somewhat lower -- the average media stock-market price is down 6% to 7% or so -- year over year.
Those declining TV ratings -- live plus same day, plus three day, plus seven-day time-shifting -- isn’t enough. The picture is much more complex -- especially when TV content companies continue to find ways to sell and air their programming that doesn’t always correlate with near-term viewership data.
For years, HBO seemed to work on the same premise. Now, Netflix goes one step better, chiefly because it has its own distribution platform. HBO counts on traditional pay TV providers to continually show its value.
Still, maybe all will change -- or disrupt -- again. For example, some believe Netflix will -- at some point -- find a new separate business to sell advertising time along with programming viewing. That could mean new TV measurements.
Netflix adamantly denies it is interested in anything ad-related -- especially when there is Amazon waiting in the wings to pounce on a theoretically better ad-related TV business, perhaps connecting TV viewing to actual sales on one platform.
Maybe Netflix believes Fox got it right: Live TV stuff is the only thing that matters when it comes to big TV advertising unit pricing premiums. Air local and national TV news and all kinds of high viewing sports.
TV network companies have long complained that standard TV ratings -- except for sports and news -- are a waste of time for business journalists to base their stories when it comes to program performance.
Networks want to tout a bigger picture; journalists want the same. But how to really compare one show with another? Media companies need more ways to measure context -- not just new audience segments. Maybe that would include behavorial, cross-media platforms.
The TV marketplace is iffy. But dollars aren’t. How about basing TV shows on how they really do -- in dollars and cents -- across advertising, international and domestic sales.Even if you don’t understand Nielsen TV ratings, everyone understands money.