Wired: Online Ads Rake in More Money for Networks than Traditional TV

Wired Online Ads Rake in More Money for Networks than Traditional TV“If you’re sick of ads interrupting your viewing experience every time you stream TV shows online, here’s some bad news for you: They’re not going to go away anytime soon.”

So begins a story by Graeme McMillan posted at Wired’s online blog.

“We actually make more money per viewer streaming than we do on television,” CBS Corporation’s chief research officer David F. Poltrack revealed at the 2014 Media & Entertainment Industry Forum in New York. “If you stream our programming online, you’re seeing a full complement of advertising—you can’t bypass it.”

According to McMillan, Poltrack estimates that CBS, which streams shows like The Big Bang Theory and The Good Wife on the web, makes somewhere between 10 and 20 percent more ad revenue per viewer online than on television.

Worse yet (if you’re tired of the commercials), Poltrack expects that number to increase.

“Demand for our online video is through the roof,” he explained.

Studies commissioned by CBS indicate that viewers are watching more television than they used to — but they’re doing it online. In a December, 2013 study for CBS, 28 percent of those asked said they were watching more TV compared to just 17 percent who said they were watching less. Another 55 percent reported that their TV viewing was unchanged.

“This doesn’t mean that traditional TV advertising is soon to be a thing of the past; ad spending on television is expected to continue to grow this year, and it still dwarves digital video ad spending 10-to-one,” writes McMillan. “But for now, you can be confident that each and every time you have to watch Samuel L. Jackson ask what’s in your wallet, you’re doing your bit—however reluctantly—to help programmers slip into (and monetize) the digital future.”