The importance of digital media may be growing, but as yet, traditional broadcast television remains at the heart of digital consumers’ entertainment habits. As our latest research on digital vs. traditional media consumption shows, daily viewing of linear TV remains ahead of online TV across all of our markets and represents the single biggest daily media activity.

Here, we look at some of the key findings from this report, to prove the continued worth of broadcast TV to building your brand following.

INSIGHT: Daily linear TV viewing remains ahead of online in all GWI markets.

Linear TV (television that is traditionally broadcast and watched in real-time) is still proving hugely popular across the globe, despite the uprise of digital media. Across 22 of our markets, linear still accounts for over 2.5 times as much daily viewing as online (TV that is streamed online or watched on demand).

Advertising on linear TV continues to reap results, and this is still a highly effective way to reach your audience, communicate brand image and increase awareness.

According to data from the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (BARB), Procter & Gamble was the most viewed brand on this medium in 2016, clocking up 34.8 billion views (14% more than in 2015).

As Lindsey Clay, Chief Executive of Thinkbox, the marketing body for commercial TV says, “TV advertising creates huge effects instantly as well as building and maintaining profitable brands for the long-term.”

Data-driven TV advertising

Addressable TV is also gathering pace, allowing brands to target ads at specific household audiences watching linear television.

Using data gathered from a set-top box to target households based on income, ethnicity and number of children, this strategy allows brands to buy fewer, more targeted impressions, resulting in less wastage.

According to eMarketer, addressable TV spend in 2015 was $400m (£30.9m) in the US. This is expected to grow to $2bn (£1.5bn) by the end of 2018.

INSIGHT: Second-screening is widespread – over 85% use another device as they watch television.

Mobile devices have made simultaneous multi-media consumption the norm, with many media activities running in parallel with each other.

This presents an opportunity for brands to drive greater brand engagement by reaching consumers at their most receptive. For example, eBay found that the costumes featured in the 2016 New Year’s special of Sherlock Holmes, “The Abominable Bride”, saw interest in Sherlock’s ‘deerstalker’ hat rise by 55% on their platform.

As Rob Bassett, Head of UK and EU Multinational Advertising at eBay, told ExchangeWire: “Creating this real-time relevance requires brands to be able to effectively identify and target shoppers who are dual screening. But the payoff is well worth the effort – helping to minimise wastage, boost sales, foster loyalty, and improve brand perception.”

Micro-moments mapping

The growth in second-screening on mobile has fuelled the importance of micro-moments, where consumers use their mobiles to complete a specific action, such as making a purchase or finding more information.

Brands with access to strong first and third party data can map the consumer journey, identify their needs at each stage, and tailor content to meet those needs during that pivotal moment.

INSIGHT: Online 55-64 year-olds are watching twice as much linear TV as 16-24s.

Our research shows that linear TV grabs 26% of daily media time among 55-64 year-old internet users, compared to just 14% among 16-24 year olds. This presents a huge opportunity for brands to connect with this age group, particularly as the ONS forecasts that over 55s will represent a third of UK workers by 2024.

Innovation foundation, Nesta, has estimated that the spending power of the ‘silver economy’ will grow from £79bn to £127bn in the UK by 2030. In addition, Euromonitor forecasts that the global spending power of people aged over 60 will reach $15tn (£11.6tn) by 2020 – almost double the amount in 2010.

This age group has the means and the motivation – and linear TV is a powerful way of reaching them.

Using data to better understand what this audience wants, and segmenting it to tailor content that appeals to individuals, can be an effective way of building your brand following.

Always on

TV advertising is still an essential part of brand discovery. As Rich Lehrfeld, Senior VP, Global Brand Marketing and Communications at American Express told AdAge: “TV as a traditional medium is still important. When we run a heavy TV schedule, we see a lift in sales and product awareness. We need to run two weeks of digital to get the reach of one day of broadcast.”

In fact, TV is becoming more relevant to the marketing mix thanks to the availability of complex data. As second-screening continues to gather pace, and addressable TV becomes more sophisticated, brands who harness data alongside this enduringly powerful broadcast medium are sure to reap results.

Like what you’ve read? Download our traditional vs. digital summary report for a closer look at the trends that matter.

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Written by

Katie is a Strategic Insights Manager at GWI. Moving to the company 4 years ago, Katie heads up the Strategic Insights team, overseeing the production of bespoke assets for clients. Katie also writes on GWI's blog, with a particular interest in social media and marketing.

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