For Consumers, TV Vs. The Internet Isn't An Either-Or Question

Our post last week on consumers’ reported TV and Internet consumption has attracted a lot of attention.[i] The data behind the annual report we published on the topic is fascinating in the trends it reveals on how consumers perceive their interactions with media outlets.[ii] While this report is dedicated to understanding consumers’ changing online and mobile behaviors, the data behind this report also lends itself to a conversation centering around the changing landscape of consumers’ media behaviors.

The story that emerges in the data in the beginning of the report illustrates the rapid growth of the Internet in consumers’ lives. However, this growth hasn’t come at the expense of TV time. In fact, as the graphic in our previous blog post shows, the amount of time consumers report spending watching TV on their televisions has remained stable. In terms of cord-cutting, this means that consumers aren’t reaching for the scissors just yet. The data from our published report, in conjunction with other data we collected earlier this year, can serve as a discussion guide about the current and future intersection of TV and the Internet. In an online survey we conducted in Q2 of this year, we found that consumers find it hard to imagine going without the content they’ve come to value: Only 2% indicated that they were “extremely likely” to disconnect their paid TV services to exclusively watch TV content online.[iii]

The role the Internet is playing in TV consumers’ lives isn’t an either-or relationship but rather a symbiotic one, delivering all the media experience consumers are looking for. For example, the most common reason that online consumers said they’d watched TV online was to catch up on an episode they’d missed (69%).[iv] Consumers are turning to the Internet to supplement their existing media lives, and this is where connected TV will come into play. As my colleague James McQuivey has said, consumers view TV and the Internet like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup: The only way to get more of what they love is to bring the two together.

 

 




[i]
If you missed any of the coverage, you can read a few of the pieces from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Mashable.

[ii]Please note that the data featured in the report should not be directly compared to Nielsen or comScore metrics, as they are consumer self-reported figures. Respondents answered the question: “In a typical week, how many hours do you spend doing each of the following?,” choosing their answers from a list of time ranges.

 You can also access previous years’ versions of this reporton our Web site.

[iii]Source: Forrester’s North American Technographics Consumer Technology Online Benchmark Recontact Survey, Q2 2010 (US)

[iv]Source: Forrester’s North American Technographics Entertainment And Media Online Benchmark Recontact Survey, Q2 2010 (US)