Originally published: March 5, 2012
Last updated: March 5, 2012 - 5:33pm
Television advertising has a growing reach problem caused by accelerating audience fragmentation.
Over the past fifteen years, the average reach of national TV campaigns has dropped by 20% and individual spots by 80%, in spite of TV viewing being at an all-time high. While this seems to have come as a surprise to many, what surprised me was the number of industry folks who have responded with an indifferent "So what?" Apparently, there is a not-so-insignificant school of thought in the media industry that reach on TV doesn't matter so much anymore. I disagree. Ad reach on TV matters now more than ever. Agencies, clients and networks alike should all care.
Here are five good reasons why:
- A target audience not reached is a potential customer not created.
- The cause of the reach problem is fragmentation compounded by the failure of industry's tools and practices to keep up.
- Talking targeting is a red herring.
- The "network effect" still requires audience exposure.
- Making up lost reach "off-TV" is expensive and not even close to comparable.
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