PVRs may not be the death knell for television advertising that some suspected.
It seems that roughly half of Canadian users of personala video recorders will stop fast forwarding through a recording to watch ads that are of interest to them.
That's according to a July 2010 survey conducted on behalf of The Television Bureau of Canada (TVB) by BBM Analytics.
The Bureau represents television networks, sales representative organizations, specialty stations and other industry participants.
The survey, which polled 1,000 people, found that the vast majority of those who do fast forward commercials still report awareness of the advertisers in the ads they are skipping.
In Canada, almost all weekly viewing is in real-time (as opposed to playback viewing of previously PVR-recorded programming), so full commercial exposure is not eliminated.
According to BBM Canada, adults 18+ watch 29.1 average weekly hours of television (National PPM data averaged over first 47 weeks of 2009/10 broadcast year). Of this total, the average weekly hours of live viewing is 28.2 (96.9% of viewing), while the average weekly hours of playback viewing is just 0.91 (3.1% of viewing).
For the small percentage of people who don't watch their television live, the survey revealed that when fast forwarding during PVR playback, 45.4% of adults 18+ say they stop to watch commercials that are of interest to them. It was even higher for those aged 35-49 (51.9%), and 35-54 (54.6%). The main reasons for stopping to watch a commercial during playback for adults 18+ was that they found the commercial entertaining (42.9%,) and they were interested in the product (41.3%).
In addition, the survey found that when fast forwarding or skipping through commercials, 66.9% of adults 18+ confirmed that they are aware of the advertisers. This was even higher for the 18-49 (69.8%) and 25-49 (75.7%) demographics.
Analysis of the results of this survey, in conjunction with the facts of low (20%) PVR penetration in Canada and largely real-time viewing, reveal a negligible impact of PVR technology on the potential of television commercial exposure. This study also shows that the art of targeted placement of commercials, and the art of crafting appealing and engaging television creative, is more important than ever, analysts report.
Audience data provided by BBM Canada, generated using InfoSysTV or microBBM.
The survey was conducted by BBM Analytics using its omniVU telephone system.