While 90% of 7-day broadcast TV viewing occurs within the first three days, shows live far beyond 'shelf lives'

Précis – Post-35-day   Nielsen  is considered less valuable than live or near-live viewing, which makes sense. Well, it used to. We now understand that a program's value extends beyond traditional horizons. For example, in Q4-18, Nielsen finds that viewing of primetime dramas rose 60% among 18-49s after 35-days, while comedies grew 36%. 

TDG – TDG began analyzing and predicting the shift from live linear to on-demand viewing more than a decade ago. By the time Nielsen changed its focus from nightly viewing to 3-day, and then 7-day, TDG Members had already seen the future. Nonetheless, it’s nice to see our long-term prognostications play out in mainstream research.

Remember the notion of  long-tail ? At first an observation about certain mathematical progressions that approach but never reach an asymptote (see Zeno’s  dichotomy paradox ) , the concept was borrowed by business types in the early 2000s to explain late-lifecycle demand for a product/service…an ever-thinner but broadening demand. It was only later employed by the film & TV industry to understand the value lifecycle of a movie or TV show in the age of quantum viewing.

So where are we now that the extent of post-35-day viewing is more widely acknowledged? Without IP-based ad targeting that knows the viewer, their context, and their habits, we’re no better off than we were before; we're simply repeating the same mass-market logic of prior years for ever smaller and thinner audiences.

There is tremendous value in long-tail video contentl. And it reaches far beyond the generation-defining franchises (i.e.,  All in the Family, MASH, Seinfeld , or  Friends ). The challenge is to match technology with title and audience, and do so in real time, matching quantum viewing with demand-specific advertising.