A record 2.9 billion minutes of television shows and movies were watched across Australia’s five broadcast video-on-demand platforms last month, according to the latest report via ThinkTV.
The rise in numbers represents a large boost to traditional “overnight” audience ratings and shows TV is moving to meet its audiences as their viewing habits change.
Demand for reality and drama shows across the BVOD market — comprised of Seven, Nine and Ten, public broadcasters ABC and SBS and pay-TV operator Foxtel — was up 43 per cent from 2 billion minutes of programs consumed in February 2018.
Nine’s hit reality dating show Married at First Sight on 9Now was the biggest driver of the record performance across the BVOD market in February.
Nine’s director of sales, strategy and product commercialisation Pippa Leary said: “We are at a point where the digital audience for some shows is adding 20 per cent plus to the overnight audiences and we are setting new growth records in the Australian BVOD space.
“That audience for some franchises, like Married at First Sight, is 300,000- 400,000.
“That is a sizable and valuable audience for marketers in its own right.
“The thing marketers need to be focused on is how TV works with BVOD.
“We know audiences are watching on TV digital devices and we are working rapidly to ensure that OzTAM can provide marketers a full picture of the total TV viewing agnostically across linear and digital devices”.
Figures from ThinkTV shareholders show that all broadcasters are getting viewing uplifts to individual programs of as much as 20 per cent from their BVOD viewing figures.
ThinkTV chief executive Kim Portrate said February’s record viewing figures for BVOD showed that TV has moved to meet its audiences, who can now watch the shows they love whenever and wherever they want.
She said: “Commercial TV first embraced BVOD almost a decade ago and today BVOD is truly coming of age with higher-speed internet connections and smartphones that put more computing power in the palm of your hand that was used to put man on the Moon 50 years ago”.
Network 10’s director of 10 Interactive Christian Williams said: “We’re seeing massive growth in BVOD which is fantastic for the industry.
“BVOD gives us great flexibility to tell stories beyond the stories in a brand safe, 100 per cent viewable environment.
“The platform has opened up more opportunities for content makers and advertisers to engage audiences in creative and innovative ways propelling the medium, along with its linear TV counterpart, into a must-have in any advertising schedule”.