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Tech Needs TV

Cable Cutting? Census Suggests Just Sharing Households.

Posted by Doug Garnett June - 21 - 2012 - Thursday

Much was made of Nielsen numbers released recently that suggested a small drop in homes with multi-channel TV (cable, satellite, etc.).

Of course, those wishing to become rich in a new digital world told us, once again, that this was the harbinger of the death of TV…just like newspaper is dead (which it isn’t) and magazines are dead (which they aren’t).

But truth is often quite complex. And today I came across this release (click here).

Guess what? CENSUS data shows that we’ve lost nearly 2 million (or more) households – real physical households – as a result of the recession. But Nielsen theoretical loss is only 1.57 million multi channel households.

Hmmm. So it’s entirely possible that the Nielsen cable numbers are mostly the result of demographic change due to the economy and NOT a sea change in TV consumption. And, there has clearly been a natural cost cutting in households due to the recession.

In other words, Nielsen may NOT have measured a drop in demand for cable, satellite and telephone service provider delivered TV. But just the recession – affecting the number of households and household budgets.

Oh well. I don’t expect reality from the VC powered digital TV lobby. So I don’t expect to hear about this from too many sources.

But these numbers should remind us all to be careful – even (or especially) with Nielsen research. And most certainly these numbers should tell advertisers to take care with any plans to shift away from TV.

Regardless of all this hoo-hah, here’s reality. Video distributed over the web produces minimal results compared with TV. And TV continues to drive business growth like nothing else.

Copyright 2012 – Doug Garnett – All Rights Reserved


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Doug Garnett, DRTV and Technology Industry Expert

Doug Garnett is founder and CEO of DRTV agency Atomic Direct and a leading expert on innovative uses of DRTV, infomercials and other in-depth TV and non-TV messages to build brand and drive sales.

Doug has been working in and around the technology field for 27 years. After starting in aerospace, he spent 5 years selling and marketing supercomputers. Since shifting to advertising, his clients have included AT&T, IBM, Apple, Disney Mobile, Ugobe, Presto, and Netpliance.

Doug sits on the editorial board of Response Magazine, is an adjunct professor of general advertising at Portland State University, and is a member of the Jordan-Whitney Greensheet Panel.

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