DVR Users View Commericals in First Day, Nielsen Says

Feb 15, 2007  •  Post A Comment

If a commercial is going to be seen by a viewer using a digital video recorder, its most likely they’ll see it in the first day or so after it was originally aired, according to a new analysis by The Nielsen Company.

The findings are likely to factor into the debate going on in the TV industry about how commercials viewed after they are broadcast by consumers using DVRs will be accounted for when ad time is purchased. This season, commercials are based on live program viewing, but by next season, Nielsen expects to be able to produce average ratings for the commercials in those programs, including those seen by DVR users.

Nielsen found that ratings for primetime broadcast commercials gain 16 percent in ratings among viewers 18-49 in homes with DVRS during the first 27 hours after being recorded. Over the full seven days that Nielsen measures, that figure rises to just 22 percent.

By comparison, ratings for prime time programs increase 35 percent in those first 27 hours, and rise by a total of 47 percent after seven days.

Nielsen also said that households with DVRs watch significantly less live TV than households without DVRS, but that most of that difference is made up after seven days of DVR playback. Those DVR owners are younger, better educated and have higher incomes than the average U.S. household.

VCRS are becoming less of a factor, Nielsen said, based on its analysis of viewing in DVR homes from Jan 1 to Jan. 21. VCR recording contribute 2.4 percent of total broadcast primetime ratings in 2007, compared to 3.1 percent in January 2006.

Nielsen released the findings today at its national clients meeting in Orlando.

(Editor: Romanelli)