Americans’ media consumption has reached a plateau, according to a recent report from eMarketer. Thankfully, lackluster forecasts for TV and other traditional forms of media are being offset by increases in time spent with digital outlets.

Let’s get the bad news over with first: overall US adult media consumption will increase by just a minute from 2018 to 2019, reaching an average of 12 hours, 9 minutes per day. It’s the highest media consumption of any of the eight countries included in the eMarketer study

The good news? New media channels are picking up the slack in both countries. Americans will spend more than six hours per day with digital media this year as compared to three-and-a-half hours with television. 

So where in the digital world should marketers be focusing their efforts?

Stream On

Americans aren’t tuning out completely, of course. A big part of traditional TV’s demise is due to the overwhelming popularity of digital video options like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime that viewers are turning to instead. US connected TV (CTV) users will reach 204.1 million by 2022, according to another eMarketer report.

“… If you’ve made a considered decision to watch something on Netflix and have paid a subscription fee to do so, you’re less likely to distract yourself by layering another kind of media usage atop that. So, less multitasking means less of an increase in total time spent with media,” said Mark Dolliver, principal analyst at eMarketer.. 

New modes of streaming television may mean less total time with media, but it also means more focused viewing, and that’s a boon for advertisers in many ways. Research shows that completion rates for CTV ads reach 94%.

Take full advantage of your investment in CTV by leveraging the cinematic storytelling qualities that it shares with traditional TV in combination with CTV’s unique targeting abilities. Not only can you personalize CTV to your audience’s interest; you can optimize TV campaigns in real time. A DSP like Tremor Video can help you navigate the many CTV environments available.

Sound it Out

Just as digital video is making big gains in the market, digital audio isn’t far behind. EMarketer estimates that daily time spent with digital audio will average 1 hour, 20 minutes this year and will reach 1 hour, 24 minutes by 2020.

While radio falters, podcast audiences just keep growing, with 62 million listening weekly, according to Edison Research. Plus, Spotify’s recent acquisition of podcasting network Gimlet Media is extending the medium’s reach even further, especially among younger listeners.

Time with smart speakers is also adding a significant bump to overall time spent with media in 2019, according to eMarketer. In what is still a nascent market, no one can quite be sure of the future advertising opportunities. But, with 133 million owners of smart speakers around the world, it’s certainly an opportunity that you’ll want to keep an eye on.

From the host-read ads and sponsored series of podcasts to the untapped market of smart speakers, digital audio is still relatively new territory for many a marketer. Opportunities are growing and ever-evolving, and advertisers would do well to strike while the iron is hot.

It’s All in the Mix

Bet you thought this post would be all about smartphones, didn’t you? While it’s true that mobile usage has outpaced TV for the first time, eMarketer predicts that even smartphone usage will plateau as users become more and more uneasy about overuse.

And, in a surprising plot twist, traditional TV is expected to make a bit of a comeback in 2020 for tentpole events like the presidential election and Summer Olympics. That increase in viewing is expected to help boost total time spent with media by a full four minutes per day.

The moral of the story? Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. CTV and other digital media is hot, but television isn’t dead yet, and even mobile’s seemingly exponential growth has its limits. Your best bet is a multi-channel approach, making the most of varied media opportunities that complement one another.

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