Full extent of Millennial, Gen X video consumption not being measured | Media Analysis | Business | News | Rapid TV News
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The place of Millennials in the TV and video firmament has been well established for some time but new research suggests that their true video consumption, and that of Generation X, is not being captured by current media measurement platforms.

millennials2 26sep2017Indeed, the survey and ethnography research released today by Omnicom Media Group agency Hearts & Science revealed that almost two-thirds of the TV and video content consumed by combined Millennial and Gen X — so-called MGX — audiences is not being tracked.

It also found that even though MGXers were spending an average of 30 hours per week consuming TV and video content, traditional TV platforms account for only a third of these hours. The remaining 20 hours were divided between TV content viewed on other devices, such as in-app on mobile or via over-the-top (OTT) devices and streaming content viewed across all devices.

Hearts & Science believes that there are big gaps in the data when it comes to measuring content and ad exposure in-app on mobile and tablet devices, on OTT devices like AppleTV and Roku; and via streaming services like Hulu and Netflix. It suggested that the barriers to cross platform measurement include slow adoption of standard ratings software developer kits (SDK) which requires integrating code to measure in-app content and ad consumption.

According to the study, the issue of unmeasured platforms becomes even more critical when factoring in the 47% of MGXers who report zero hours consuming content on traditional TV platforms – meaning that they exclusively consume TV and video via devices outside of the measurement coverage map. Because it believes that today’s currency of TV measurement is not equipped to capture the whole story of this segment’s media consumption, the Hearts & Science study authors have dubbed these viewers ‘unreachables’ – reflecting the fact that existing planning tools are based on metrics that will guide buying away from reaching this audience.

Yet the agency was confident that these unreachables can be reached – provided marketers, agencies and content producers unite to move the measurement beyond the entrenched practices. “Mobile and streaming innovation bring about new creative opportunities, but they also create a complex problem that can be summed in a simple statement: if it can’t be measured, it can’t be properly targeted or planned against as part of a cohesive, cross-platform campaign,” remarked Hearts & Science CEO Scott Hagedorn, summing up the study’s implications for marketers.

However, the company warned that until the measurement currency catches up with shifts in audience behaviour, marketers must reconsider their old advertising playbook of demo targeting and reliance on TV ratings in order to reach and engage with this distracted generation of consumers. It added that planning systems must be adjusted to account for the glaring gaps in the measurement data, and new mobile datasets leveraged as they emerge.