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What TV Bundles Tell Us About the State of the Ad Industry

A new study produced by entertainment intelligence firm Hub Research offers some interesting insights into the future of TV bundles, helping explain how and why consumers are shifting their viewing habits online. As traditional TV options become more “fragmented” in the digital space, there’s understandable concern from those in the ad industry about how this might impact media buying strategies. But based on a few key facts from Hub’s findings, today’s expanding range of viewing options seems like it will offer advertisers more, not fewer, options to reach consumers. Here are three statistics from the report that help explain why:

Interest in Digital “Live TV” Experiences Is High
There’s been plenty of hand-wringing about the decline in audiences for live TV programming, one of traditional TV’s biggest sources of ad revenue. But according to Hub’s findings, there appears to be lots of opportunity to shift this advertising online with a digital-format live TV experience. When asked if they would be interested in a live TV service provided by Google, more than 80% of consumers in Hub’s research said they were either “somewhat” or “very” interested.

Most Viewers Still Want the Traditional Networks
Another telling sign of the popularity of traditional network TV is that many respondents in Hub’s report said they would include these stations in their “ideal” content bundle. When asked what stations they would include if they could build their ideal a la carte selection of channels for a TV package, NBC, ABC, FOX and CBS all made the top five. That’s great news for advertisers who have long-relied on ad buys on these stations to reach the broadest possible base of consumers.

Younger Consumers are Heavy Viewers of Paid TV Services
One more promising signal for advertisers from the Hub Report was its discovery that those between the ages of 18-34 are heavy users of paid digital TV services. Whereas the average viewer across all ages subscribed to a mean of 2.8 paid services, those in this younger cohort subscribed to a mean of 3.7 paid TV channels. This is a promising statistic for advertisers, who have long worried about how they might reach this coveted demographic as their viewing habits evolve.

At first glance, it’s easy to assume digital viewing habits are bad news for advertisers who look to TV for scale. But based on these content bundling results from Hub Research, it’s starting to look like the shift toward TV bundles still provides the powerful reach that brands are looking for.