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#KantarOnAir: Internet disrupts TV

It's never been more evident that the internet and mobile era is disrupting TV for good. Here's how the first day of presentations and panelists at Kantar Media's World Audiences Summit 2016 explained the implications.

With addictive real-time ratings boards showing share of station in Brazilian households and a 'game of phones' 12 question touchscreen quiz - on which I scored an embarrassingly low 5/12 for all to see - it was obvious before the first day of Kantar Media's sixth world audiences summit even began on 1 June in Cape Town for the first time down in the Westin Hotel's Ballroom. For example, did you know that twice as many dog videos are watched over the expected cat video craze on YouTube; that Google is the most popular term searched for on both Google itself and direct competitor Yahoo; and that 26% of all apps downloaded are uninstalled again within 10 minutes?

Peter Chalakov ©
Peter Chalakov © 123RF

Perhaps best highlighting just how the internet - and mobile internet at that - is disrupting TV, the day was made all the more interactive as the audience was encouraged to participate in polls and ask the presenters questions and engage through the app.

The fact that we were also introduced to new definitions for core TV, which is watched on a television set, and the new term 'extended TV' shows that visual broadcasting is no longer limited to the big black box in the corner of the living room but now incorporates all video content watched on any device. It's proof of the oft-quoted fact that the TV research industry of the past has focused too much on the pipes and not enough on the liquid or actual ratings data. Little wonder as that actual data is just colossal, with a quality representative panel at its heart. Welcome to the new future of research, said Richard Asquith, CEO of audience intelligence at Kantar Media.

TV's new reality... Not reality TV but real viewer data

Asquith explained that as homes have so many video-viewing devices nowadays, we need to better control the level of detail captured. TV's new reality thus lies in driving measurement standards, not in standardisation thereof. It requires a hybrid measurement system based on the best of both worlds. As a result, broadcasters are now embracing online video as well as programmatic trading, and feeling the tension of keeping up with global trends while still addressing local concerns. It requires the inclusion of time-shifted viewing as well as real-time ratings, programmatic API, cross-platform audience appreciation as well as cross-media measurement for a total view, all of which is happening at Kantar, right now.

Justin Sampson, the chief executive of BARB UK, calls this 'people-watching in the internet era'. Imagine life without the internet, he said, to incredulous laughs from the audience as we factored in just how much it removes friction from our daily interactions and offers new opportunities, proving itself as the most accountable media platform ever, much as Marshall McLuhan predicted 50+ years ago...

With that in mind, Sampson said to factor in the duality of device data, which is only strengthened by people data, with a future as both a planning tool and a trading currency, as well as the importance of both stability and innovation in hitting this mark going forward.

Big data: People-based, not cookie-based

We also gained insights into Thailand, China, Denmark, Norway and Pakistan’s broadcast measurement behaviour in 2016. Key among these are global trends such as audiences going multi-screen or second-screening. There's a related rise in time-shifted viewing and even out-of-home viewing, based on video devices in caravans and holiday homes. The rise of digital and set-top boxes also mean more low-tech broadcasters are now using YouTube as a gateway, pointing to the need for cross-media measurement. They also provided a reality check on the true figures for online video-viewing as online viewing definitely rises when TV goes down and binge watching is a notable new behaviour, but at the end of the day online TV ratings are actually pretty small.

Fittingly, Nunu Ntshingila of Facebook Africa gave a brief overview of the power of social and video content for advertisers as part of an international panel. She explained there are now 120 million Facebook users in Africa, and that what started out as a purely social chat space has evolved and is now somewhere to discover new content, products and services. She says advertisers are slowly realising Facebook’s true reach and confirms that measurement and marketing of the future will become people-based, not cookie-based.

The day ended with a sense of embracing that notion of how we differ yet are all the same with attendees split into various Cape-based networking activities, ranging from swimming with penguins in Boulder’s Beach to a history-rich tour of Robben Island and taking in the beauty of the Constantia winelands.

Watch for coverage of the second day's content soon and follow the #KantarOnAir hashtag.

About Leigh Andrews

Leigh Andrews AKA the #MilkshakeQueen, is former Editor-in-Chief: Marketing & Media at, with a passion for issues of diversity, inclusion and equality, and of course, gourmet food and drinks! She can be reached on Twitter at @Leigh_Andrews.

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