Australians are watching almost 26 hours of video per month, a 5% year-on-year increase

Australians across all demographics are watching around 25 hours and 40 minutes of video per month, according to a Zenith report, with that trend expected to continue well into 2021.

In June, that represented a 5% year-on-year increase for people over 18 streaming video. In addition, ad spend for online video rose 26.2% to $1.4bn last year (8% of the total ad market), and Zenith predicts spend will continue to grow by 24% each year to reach almost $3.2bn in 2022.

“While it’s not surprising that younger age groups are spending more hours watching video – up to 48 hours a month – what’s more significant is the increased uptake from Australians aged 65+, which has grown 18% since last year, demonstrating that video consumption is healthy across all demographics,” said Joshua Lee, Zenith Melbourne’s head of digital.

Zenith’s Lee

Mobile is still the primary way people are consuming short-form video, but the average number of screens people are using has increased from 6.3 to 6.6.

“The majority of Australians across all demographics prefer watching short-form video on mobile, which resonates strongly among younger audiences aged 18-24 and 25-34. YouTube is a prime example where 76% most of its viewing time occurs on smartphones and tablets,” Lee said.

“Conversely, for longer-form content the TV screen is still essential, with 8.1m Australians accessing internet content via a TV screen, and half of connected TV (CTV) viewers mostly or always watch with someone else. As a result, CTV remains a big focus and point of differentiation for publishers and content creators.”

Additionally, paid subscriptions are on the rise, with almost 14m Australians over the age of 14 subscribing to a paid video service, an improvement of 7.9% on last year. Lee predicts this will continue with the introduction of Disney+ and Apple TV+.

“With the imminent arrival of Disney+ and Apple TV+, there’s been much market speculation around their potential impact on Netflix and Stan’s user base, which until now have shown year-on-year growth of 17.6% and 43.2% respectively,” he noted.

“From a broadcast video on-demand (BVOD) perspective, time spent has dramatically increased by 76% year-on-year. So we’re seeing a continued positive trend and opportunity for advertisers seeking out premium environments to reach their audience and align their brand with.”

Lee added that video ads remain the most-viewable across devices, with an overall 73.4% viewability on desktops and 63.9% on mobile.

“In terms of ad formats, publishers and advertisers are showing continued efforts to improve creative resonance on mobile. This is apparent in the proliferation of 6-second ads, vertical ads and stories complemented by short-form creative best practices to capture attention early and deliver longer lasting brand impact,” he said.

“While video has traditionally been used for upper funnel and brand awareness, advertisers are also turning to video to drive purchase intent. The concept of brand commerce comes to mind when we consider the popularity of shoppable video ad formats and buy-now, call-to-action overlays.

“Overall, video has a very bright future and one that can only further excel when cross-media measurement becomes available via OzTAM’s VOZ solution. This development is the market’s next biggest opportunity to help determine the incremental reach from viewing on connected devices and optimise spend across all channels, markets, platforms and devices.”


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