Robust foresight is important to broadcasters and advertisers for informing effective business scenario planning, forecasting, content, marketing and innovation strategies. Below we discuss five of the biggest potential drivers of change in TV.

1. Tech advancement

Time use studies show we are watching as much TV now as we ever have, however audience behaviours are shifting dramatically with the rise of on-demand streaming services and the proliferation of mobile devices empowering viewers to consume content whenever and wherever they please. As a result, traditional linear broadcasting is waning in popularity.

This is a global trend, although different countries are at different stages of maturity. Streaming is available in about 67% of UK homes, Norway boasts 89% penetration with a higher number of streaming providers per household.

And as the adoption of 5G and soon 6g, cloud computing, and AI promise more efficient content delivery and personalized experiences, this trend is set to continue. The decreasing costs attached technology such as connected TVs means demand is unlikely to be constrained.

2. Demographic shifts

Audiences in many parts of the world are ageing, as well as become increasingly diverse and multicultural. Single person households, adult children living with parents, and blended family structures are all surging with changes in birthrates, level of education and age of marrying. As life-stages become more diverse and flexible so too are daily routines and working patterns becoming more flexible. This will all influence content preferences and consumption patterns.

Gaming on TV set

These changes will also interplay with the changing competitive landscape. Not just in terms of channel availability but for example, the rise of use of the physical TV box for video game playing.

3. Regulatory priorities

Rising demand and peaks in bandwidth will intensify spectrum competition and Governments will need to strategically plan for utilization and development of spectrum resources. Especially in anticipation of emerging technologies like 6G. Additional challenges will arise in managing cybersecurity threats, addressing data security concerns, and ensuring equitable access to connectivity.

Governments will be concerned with protecting consumer rights, ensuring fair competition, all while fostering innovation.

4. Content economics

Last year, the UK ranked third in nationwide video-on-demand (VOD) revenue, following the United States and China.

However, content is also likely to be an issue in sustaining grow and revenues. It has been critical to the development of streaming services but the lockdown boom is over for streamers. Costs are going up, password sharing is being stopped, cord cutting is increasing. Budgets are being severely reduced (especially by Netflix and Disney). The current SAG strike also means that there will be little new scripted content in the coming years. Other black swan effects may well effect the speed and shape of change in broadcasting.

5. Advertisers attention

TV CPMs (the cost advertisers have to pay per thousand viewers reached) have been going up against declining linear viewing and increasing Subscription Video on Demand (SVOD), Free Ad Supported Streaming TV (FAST).

In addition to reach and numbers, advertisers are increasingly interested in viewer Attention and in growing Mental Availability (many media agencies, media owners and trade bodies sponsoring research on this).  And there are developments in targeted advertising like Sky’s AdSmart system.

Emphasis on personalisation and targeting to capture and engage fragmented audiences across various platforms is likely to continue.

To find out more about trends and foresight relevant to your brand, please contact Patrick@trajectorypartnership.com or +447941055376.

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