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Ratings War?

It is undeniable that the current world is in a stage of great social and political upheavals. It is not necessary to give a thorough review of everything that is happening to accept this fact; just by reading, listening, and seeing some of the things that happen every day, we can realize that the post-pandemic period and the fact of being governed more by testosterone than by the logic of events are not proving easy.

The title of this writing begins with the word ‘war’ because it is the best and worst word at the same time to summarize what is happening around us: There are many wars in the world, apart from those we feel very close to right now, such as Ukraine or the war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip. We also have the wars in Burkina Faso, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, Myanmar, Nigeria, Syria… According to Therese Petterson, coordinator of the Uppsala Conflict Data Program (UCDP), ‘more than 8 wars are currently in full pre-war escalation…’

If we focus on Spain, I won’t go into detail about the state of the country, because at the moment I’m writing this new blog, we have on the table the issue of Pedro Sánchez, the Catalan elections, amnesty, housing prices that continue to rise despite any housing laws they may enact, or the dismissal of a person for being late to work due to the poor state of the commuter services and others in Catalonia. I could continue with 10 more articles like this and I wouldn’t stop counting the problems and issues that citizens have to stoically endure every day, without blinking an eye. Of course, paying their taxes religiously in the most convenient way possible, lest a small mistake result in a 150% penalty, a percentage that the public administration has at its disposal if it deems it appropriate.

Right now, and focusing more on what concerns us from ÉXITOTV, we have the battle of ratings. Here it is also like when there are elections and we hear political parties explain to us that they have all won. Only when they lose miserably do they accept their defeat, although there is always some ‘but’ to add. If you read the trends from a television-friendly point of view, you’ll read that the best thing is to run an advertising campaign on television. If you do the same regarding the radio medium, it’s more of the same, and so on with all the available options. At ÉXITOTV, we have to be more cold and calculating, as this is the demand that our clients ask of us every day. Let’s get to it, as briefly as possible:

Television continues to be in very good health if we consider that it’s true that the way of watching television is no longer as it used to be, with the whole family sitting in the living room around the household’s king appliance. Now, everyone goes their own way and watches whatever they want, on their tablet, computer, mobile phone, or whatever screen is closest. By diversifying devices, it is true that audience calculations in this regard have to be reduced to the figures that the major audits give us, and in this sense, we have the following data, according to Barlovento as of March 2024:

  • TOTAL UNIQUE VIEWERS: The Accumulated Unique Viewers in March 2024 on Traditional Television reach the figure of 43.7 million (93.8% of the population of Spain).

  • DAILY UNIQUE VIEWERS: 28.2 million Spaniards watch Traditional Television every day for at least one minute (60.5% of the population).

  • TOTAL TV CONSUMPTION (TRADITIONAL + HYBRID): The total TV consumption time rises to 233 minutes per person per day (+ 5.2% vs. the previous year). For activities other than watching Traditional Television, there are 2.9 million viewers.

Datos de la primera ola de 2024 de la Audiencia General de Medios según AIMC.

The most-watched channel remains ANTENA 3 (Atresmedia). In second and third position, TELECINCO and TVE are alternating positions; one month one has more viewers than the other, and vice versa. Although TELECINCO is gradually improving its data with shows like “Supervivientes,” which has brought them many joys in its last edition, as they manage to achieve over 20% audience share, figures they haven’t seen in many months. In terms of advertising, television is doing well, as it now allows us to choose or combine traditional television campaigns with digital ones, enabling us to segment and geolocate campaigns where they are most relevant. I’ll explain this in more detail in a forthcoming blog because the truth is that running an advertising campaign on digital television offers thousands of options and delivers reliable and fast results. All television channels offer this option (TV3, ANTENA 3, LA SEXTA, TELECINCO, CUATRO, OTHER REGIONAL TELEVISIONS, etc.). By the way, at ÉXITOTV, we have closed a deal with MOVISTAR, and we will now also distribute campaigns on the MOVISTAR+ digital platform.

Referring to the Internet medium, the cumulative offers, which are much more abundant than television offerings, result in its penetration reaching 88.6% of the population, making it a well-established and reliable medium for deploying successful marketing and advertising campaigns. The range of options is truly extensive and varied, but we understand that we will need to diversify our advertising exposure considerably because, given its diversity, being present in just a couple of media is not sufficient; we must be present in many. The consolidation of digital platforms, online shopping, hybrid work, and the fact that YouTube and the website of the State Lotteries and Betting are the websites with the most unique visitors in Spain, provide a clear understanding of why digital media is performing so well.

Outdoor advertising has made a strong comeback. This includes advertising in transport and large formats. According to the latest EGM, over 34.5 million individuals have seen outdoor advertising in recent days.

Radio continues to enjoy good health overall, reaching a total of 22.6 million people who listen to the radio every day, accounting for 53.7% of the Spanish population. In terms of generalist radio stations, SER, COPE, and ONDA CERO continue to lead, while in music radio, Los 40, Cadena 100, and Cadena Dial take the prize. In Catalonia, RAC1 remains the leader, although CATALUNYA RÀDIO has significantly improved its data.

In the print media sector (newspapers, magazines, supplements…), all of them have experienced a decline in audience compared to the previous EGM wave. The share is now 23.3% compared to the previous 24.5%. It is a fact that digital media is making a dent; people prefer to look at screens rather than flip through a newspaper or magazine. As a curiosity, the weekly magazines that withstand the trend are “Pronto,” “Hola,” and “Lecturas,” with an audience of 3.7 million people. Monthly magazines have an audience of 7.5 million, down from the previous wave’s 8 million. The most-read newspapers are “Marca,” “El País,” and “El Mundo.” In Catalonia, “La Vanguardia,” “El Mundo Deportivo,” “Sport,” and “El Periódico.”

The cinema is experiencing a slight decline again, dropping from 7.1% to 6.5%. However, on a positive note, we can assess that this current figure is higher than what we had in 2019, before the pandemic. 46.9% of the population claim to go to the cinema “occasionally,” while 53.1% say they never or almost never go. Only 0.9% go once or more times a week, while 8.3% go once a month. 20.2% go to the cinema up to 5 times a year at most.

As you can see, it’s a battle of numbers, which depending on how you look at it, leads us to conclude that if what we want is immediate notoriety, branding, and positioning more or less quickly, television is a very suitable medium for this. Internet, if diversified and invested in heavily and wisely, is also in a very good position. Outdoor advertising is also a very good option, depending on our objectives. Radio also works. But all of this, as I always say, provided you have a good media and advertising agency that plans each campaign properly. And remember, ephemeral campaigns, trying it out for a month and seeing what happens, are not very advisable; a serious plan with the ability to understand how to use the budget you have is necessary. At ÉXITOTV, we are waiting for you.