Report: Online-video viewing reflects seasonal TV programming

Online-video viewing patterns are starting to more closely resemble traditional-TV viewing patterns that increase during prime time and decrease when shows go on "hiatus," or seasons end, according to a report compiled by end-to-end analytics and monetization platform builder VideoHub.

The Q1 2012 Performance Replay provides "a snapshot of the video advertising and video content market," the company said.

That snapshot includes the fact that online video viewership--while still spread pretty evenly across the day--is tending to more closely resemble traditional television viewership and its spikes towards prime time and season-ending programming.

Digital audiences, the report continued, show "flatter viewing patterns" with no hour of the day exceeding a 6 percent share of the total video streams compared to day part-driven viewing patterns for traditional TV audiences. The two--digital and traditional TV--come closer together when TV seasons are in their prime.

"In Q4 when TV programs hit their season finales, digital viewership saw a shift toward prime time and the highest streaming between 4 and 9 p.m.," the report noted. During the first quarter of 2012, when many programs went on hiatus, digital viewership was highest between noon and 4 p.m. Then, as shows premiered during the middle to later part of the first quarter primetime viewership grew until March viewership was comparable to January.

"Online video is at a crossroad and we finally have insight into how TV and digital lines are blurring at increasing rates," Kelly McEttrick, senior director of platform strategy for VideoHub, said in a news release. "The data we're seeing supports recent claims that concurrent media usage continues to grow and TV is experiencing a small decrease in time spent of the first time."

McEttrick said the report helps VideoHub understand "the interplay between the digital and traditional screens. It's becoming less about one screen versus another and more about an inevitability that marketers and content providers need to understand now."

The report also noted an increasing trend in advertising viewability. Approximately 88 percent of all ads streamed online in the first quarter were "fully visible to viewers," according to VideoHub. While noting that the majority of ads are being viewed within what it calls "Large Player Environments," the report made the point that "across all player sizes, viewing quality has been strong" and that the visibility of these ads was "much stronger than statistics have indicated for display ads."

Breaking it down, only 7 percent of 3.5 million video streams analyzed were partially obstructed and only 5 percent were never seen by viewers at all.

For more:
 - see the release

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