Yes, Virginia, there is linear television.

Apr 18, 2019 • Aaron Goldman

We’ve all seen the headlines…

How much have younger viewers bailed on traditional TV? New stats are alarming.

Viewers Cut the Cable TV Cord Faster Than Expected.

US Digital Ad Spending Will Surpass Traditional in 2019.

More people will turn to their mobile device instead of TV for entertainment in 2019.

But TV is not dead – far from it. Anyone who watched the Masters or Game of Thrones this past Sunday can attest to the enduring power of live entertainment and appointment viewing.

The Masters delivered the highest overnight rating for a morning golf telecast since metered ratings were introduced 34 years ago. And GoT hit one billion viewers for the premiere of its final season.

The echo effect of these events reverberated across water coolers and social media the world over. As reported via Advanced Television, we saw a 74% increase in people engaging with GoT on the day after the Season 8 premiere compared to Season 7.

And Tiger’s masterful performance netted him an impressive boost on the second-screen.

Tiger Woods social media engagement

To be sure, the social lift generated by TV goes beyond content and celebrities and extends to brands and ads. As you can see from our rankings published on Found Remote, leading advertisers generate 80%+ spikes in social engagement during the minutes following their commercials airing. And Nike scored a 534% list in social engagers on Masters’ weekend thanks to its sponsorship of Woods and timely #JustDoIt spot.

Brands can also use tools like the 4C Insights Affinity GraphTM to uncover the TV programming their audience is engaging with. Ahead of the GoT premiere, we found that the show’s US audience is also engaging with Bud Light, while the UK audience engages with British Vogue.

The bottom line is TV’s not going away – it’s just sharing time with other devices. And, as Claudio Marcus, GM of FreeWheel Data Platform, pointed out on LinkedIn in response to one of the ominous headlines above, the statistics can be conflated when trying to fit a narrative.

The key is taking a comprehensive view across video everywhere. That’s what 4C is here for and a big part of why we were so excited to announce the launch of Kinetiq, the world’s largest TV intelligence network. If you missed it last week, Broadcasting & Cable has a great recap.

Capitalizing on multi-screen consumption is also the core of our 4C Sync solution. Check out our case studies for Unilever Wall’s, Woodford Reserve, and Kraft Heinz as evidence of performance improvements for social ads paired with live TV and sport.

So, no, kids, linear TV is not dead. And, yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.

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