Illustration by Sarah Kim / Getty / The Current

Streaming devices skyrocket in Germany as more viewers tune out of traditional media

June 30, 20223 minute read

Illustration by Sarah Kim / Getty / The Current

Many German viewers are tuning out of traditional TV. Indeed, nearly a quarter of people aged 14 to 39 — a demographic highly coveted by advertisers — no longer watch linear TV, according to a new pilot study that looked at how German audiences consume video. The results of the study, which surveyed 2,500 Germans aged 18 to 65, were released by The Trade Desk and GfK, a German TV measurement company, at Germany’s annual Online Marketing Rockstars conference recently.

The shift in viewing behavior comes as more Germans enjoy TV content via streaming services and devices. In fact, 64 percent of those surveyed now have connected TV (CTV) devices, the number more than doubling over the last four years.

The study’s findings are yet another indicator that advertisers that rely solely on traditional, linear TV are missing an opportunity to engage with the elusive 18 to 34 age category. Twenty-five percent of 14-to 29-year-olds as well as 22 percent of 30- to 39-year-olds surveyed said they no longer watch linear TV.

The study’s findings are yet another indicator that advertisers that rely solely on traditional, linear TV are missing an opportunity to engage with the elusive 18 to 34 age category. Twenty-five percent of 14-to 29-year-olds as well as 22 percent of 30- to 39-year-olds surveyed said they no longer watch linear TV.

The study also looked at the impact of integrating CTV advertising for five large brands, including a global fast-food chain, which ran video campaigns over eight weeks in late 2021. Viewers taking part in the survey installed automatic recognition software, or ACR, that analyzed what was playing on their TVs over the course of the study.

“We got more bang for our buck than if we had invested the same budget in linear TV alone, and were thus able to reach more people in our target group. This disproportionately affects the young target group, which is increasingly difficult to reach with linear TV,” says Georg Sladek, head of brand marketing at mobile.de, the leading car sales platform in Germany.

The results of the study also showed that German viewers under 40 years old were twice as likely to exclusively stream their favorite shows versus watching them through linear channels. In fact, 63 percent of those who exclusively watch through CTV are 39 and under, reinforcing the growing importance of CTV in reaching new and emerging consumer audiences.

“Particularly for addressing younger target groups, advertisers need to focus much more on CTV. The combination of linear and connected TV — now proven — can deliver strong net reach,” says Simon Köpp, senior director of business development at The Trade Desk, who initiated and supported the study.

“It’s great to see that this study has validated cross-media single-source measurement as a groundbreaking component to understanding CTV’s exclusive reach in an increasingly fragmented and complex advertising landscape,” adds Daniel Tjondronegoro, co-founder of Beatgrid, a leading cross-media audience measurement company. “Knowing how a CTV campaign compares to linear TV helps advertisers plan accurately.”


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