TAM Ireland, the TV audience measurement company, has criticised a report that appeared in Thursday’s Irish Independent about viewership of TV ads in the Irish market. The report said that “TV advertising in Ireland is facing a shake-up after new figures show a 25pc drop in viewership of ads on Irish television.”
TAM Ireland issued a statement in response to the report, which also claimed that “Ireland is moving away from live TV but no one will admit it.”
“Following the article in today’s Irish Independent we would like to point out a number of inaccuracies in the report,” the TAM Ireland statement reads.
“Firstly it states that “people may be moving away from Live scheduled TV to devices such as phones, tablets and smart video players in escalating numbers. Evidence from the last 10 years shows that the trend is a total increase in time spent viewing. Live TV is still being viewed for just as long today as it was 10 years ago but people are now also viewing in other ways; time-shift, catch-up, on-demand etc. across different devices and these ways of viewing are adding to their total viewing time. The article also quoted figures about Netflix viewing from a recent Comreg report – this report was based on a sample of 99 people, the figures reported are “claimed” viewing figures and 2 of the respondents claimed to view for in excess of 50 hours per week! This was then compared to TAM Ireland figures which come from a nationally representative panel of 1050 homes (2362 individuals) in Ireland (one of the most representative panels in Europe) who’s viewing activity is monitored 24/7, hardly a consistent comparison. TAM Ireland have evidential proof of TV viewing for an average of 3 hours 27 minutes every day, that’s in excess of 24 hours per week. 90% of which is to live TV,” according to TAM Ireland.
“The TAM Ireland panel is the most robust form of media measurement in Ireland and is supported by the entire television advertising industry both broadcasters and media agencies. It is “actual” measurement rather than measurement based on “claimed activity” which many other media rely on.
In relation to the number of ads being viewed, all media experience fragmentation – it is the nature of the industry and always has been. It is the reason why advertisers employ the expertise of media agencies, to guide them through the proliferation of media in the market. Where TV advertising stands head and shoulders above all other media, however, is in our accountability. TV ads are only counted when they are viewed in real time. The advertiser knows that what is being paid for is being viewed, no other media can make that claim with such authority.
“Finally with regard to TV universes, there has been a decline in the younger universes, primarily because the profile of the population has changed. The age cohort effected most has been 25-34s. Why? Reverse migration (new nationals returning home), emigration (lack of suitable employment at a key lifestage forcing people away) and a smaller younger age cohort (15-24s) coming through to replace the existing age cohort as a result of a declining birth rate from years ago. 25-34s make up a bigger percentage of 15-34s, 25-44s and Hk+Ch. This is why these various age cohorts are suffering the most. Adults 45+ aren’t declining to these levels. TAM Ireland are of course, very conscious of viewing via other devices and sources and have been monitoring the changing trends of this over the last number of years. The 4th annual “Total viewing habits survey” will be carried out by Ipsos MRBI again in early 2016.”