- TV ad spending is expected to grow 0.5% to $71.65 billion this year, according to an eMarketer press release made available to Marketing Dive. The forecast is down from eMarketer’s $72.72 billion prediction in Q1 and the change was attributed to cord-cutting accelerating faster than expected this year.
- The industry group does see TV ad spending continuing to grow over the next several years, but those growth rates have been adjusted downward. TV’s share of overall media spending is expected to reach 34.9% in 2017 with that share dropping to 30% by 2021.
- EMarketer is predicting 22.2 million cord-cutters 18-years-old and up this year, an increase of 33.2% over 2016, and significantly higher than the previous forecast of 15.4 million. Cord-nevers will grow 5.8% to 34.4 million U.S. adults. It’s expected that by 2021, the number of cord-cutters will almost equal the number of those who never had pay TV at all.
While digital channels combined have surpassed linear TV in ad spending, and that trend isn’t changing, TV still has broad influence over ad strategies for many brands. While big marketers like P&G have displayed some renewed interest in TV this year, this could be more a case of sticking with the devil they know while digital advertising works out problems like a lack of transparency than it is a belief that TV can provide the reach it once did.
The challenge for TV, and those brands still producing standard TV spots, is the steady attrition of people who simply can’t be reached via traditional TV. Instead marketers have to find them on an increasing variety of digital options from over-the-top (OTT) streaming options like Netflix to skinny bundles from traditional TV providers and even on social media platforms, with Snapchat, Facebook and others ramping up original programming.
EMarketer's research shows time spent watching original programming is on a slow and steady shift from TV to digital between 2015 to 2019. In fact, this year is the first where the average time spent for TV was less than four hours a day. In 2017, the U.S. adult average will spend one hour 17 minutes on digital devices and three hours 58 minutes on TV a day. In 2019, these numbers are expected to shift to one hour 26 minutes on digital and three hours 47 minutes on TV. The change isn’t dramatic, but the trend is clear.