Survey: 28% young adults likely to add new TV subscriptions

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The coronavirus has halted most aspects of familiar life, but TV watching has increased dramatically as consumers spend more time on subscriptions they have and consider new sources to fill the hours.

On March 18th and 19th, Hub fielded an online survey of 1,274 US TV consumers to see how social distancing and increased stress have changed entertainment behavior.

Highlights from the study:

1) The majority of consumers – even younger ones – are engaged fully in social distancing.

  • Among all respondents, 58 per cent say that they are staying at home and only leaving for necessities.  Another 29 per cent say they are spending more time at home and having less contact with others.
  • Among those age 16-24, more than half (52 per cent) say they are staying at home exclusively and a third (32 per cent) say they are spending more time at  home and have less contact with others.

2) Among those who are social distancing, use of all TV platforms is up

  • Users of streaming platforms report the biggest increases in usage. More than a third of Disney+ (36 per cent), Hulu (37 per cent), and Netflix (35 per cent) users say they are watching a lot more today than a month ago.
  • A lot of time is being spent on console gaming as well: 35 per cent of gamers say they’re playing a lot more today than a month ago.
  • Finally, pay-per-view rentals are benefitting. Among those who rent PPV content at all, two thirds (66 per cent) are doing that more than a month ago, and 31 per cent are doing that “a lot” more.

3) Social distancing will create at least some entirely new users.

  • Twenty-eight percent of viewers age 16-24 say they are likely to add new TV subscriptions during this time, and 24 per cent of those ages 25 to 54 say the same.

4) Social distancing is creating a need for specific kinds of content

  • Two thirds of news viewers (65 per cent) say they are watching a lot or a little more news than one month ago.
  • There’s a similar increase in viewing of shows for kids (60 per cent)
  • Three quarters (73 per cent) agree that current events have made “comfort viewing” (like old favorite shows) more attractive

“Right now, consumers have more need for entertainment content than they’ve ever had before – as a practical way to fill time and a distraction from the stresses in the real world,” said Jon Giegengack, Principal at Hub.  “Consumers are spending more time wringing out the content they already have, and many are open to spending on new subscriptions and PPV content to help fill the hours. Viewers are forming new habits right now, some of which may persist after restrictions are lifted and/or through an economic .”

 


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