Nielsen News: Summer TV Usage, Women's sports & Quality Audience Data

Streaming grabs a record 38.7% of total TV usage in July, with acquired titles outpacing new originals

With kids settled into their summer breaks in July, they continued to have an outsized effect on TV usage. While overall TV usage was up just slightly from June (0.2%), viewing among people under the age of 18 increased 4%, and viewing among adults 18 and older fell 0.3%. These trends resulted in increased streaming and “other” usage, which is  primarily attributed to video game consoles.

An array of new original programs arrived on streaming platforms in July, including The Witcher and The Lincoln Lawyer on Netflix, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan on Prime Video and The Bear on Hulu, but acquired content was the stand-out for the month. Suits, streaming on Netflix and Peacock, and Bluey on Disney+ were the most watched programs in July, accounting for 23 billion viewing minutes. Suits, however, set new viewing records for an acquired title, amassing almost 18 billion minutes. In aggregate, the heavy viewing levels pushed streaming’s share of TV to 38.7%, a new record, with Amazon Prime Video, Netflix and YouTube all hitting all-time highs.

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Women’s sports viewership on the rise.

Interest in women’s sports is growing at a meteoric pace.

The 2023 NCAA tournament drew nearly 10 million viewers for the final game between Iowa and LSU—up 103% from the previous year. The WNBA draft audience increased 42% between 2022 and 2023 and was up 89% with female viewers. Interest in the Women’s Super League increased 81% from 2022 to 2023, and this year, 41% of the global population are excited for the Women’s World Cup, rising from 34% before the 2019 Women’s World Cup. This massive shift hasn’t occurred in a vacuum. It’s the result of brands, sponsors and broadcasters investing in and prioritizing women’s sports.

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As media options proliferate, quality audience data is the key to delivering marketing impact

By 2025, experts believe the world will be rife with about 175 zettabytes of data. It would take 1.8 billion years to download that much data with an average internet connection. For marketers, this much data could pose a challenge, seeing as how their task is identifying who, out of the 8 billion people on the planet, is generating the data that best represents their target audience.

To do their jobs, marketers need information that’s representative of people, not devices or digital signals. However, only 23% of the marketers surveyed for Nielsen’s 2023 Annual Marketing Report strongly agree that they have the quality audience data they need to get the most out of their media budgets.

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