Writes Rick McGinnis on the state of TV:
since liberal bias triumphed on network television and advertisers were persuaded that debt-ridden young urbanites, not comfortable older viewers, were the most desirable demographic.
With streaming and downloading services like Netflix and iTunes, viewers can cherry pick the shows they want to watch and have their preferences recorded accurately, instead of sifting through the churning pipeline of broadcast television while unreliable ratings meters like Nielsen try to discern trends.
Indeed, the whole “18 to 49” thing was always a myth, perpetrated by one network to fool its rivals — and its rivals fell for it. That’s how stupid these rich and powerful people are…
“CBS’s ratings hold was impregnable, but only if one measured the whole audience. It was the genius of Leonard Goldenson, the head of ABC, which routinely finished in third place well behind CBS and NBC, to change the rules. Unable to compete in the big sweepstakes, Goldenson created a smaller one that he could win. ABC, he told advertisers, was getting younger viewers than CBS and NBC, which meant that advertisers with products appealing to that segment would be wise to buy time on ABC. That was akin to a football team saying that it had lost the game, but it had gained more yards…. The network had managed to make itself seem successful despite its consistent third-place finishes. It was all smoke and mirrors.”
OK, but what if…? Nope:
How lousy are age and sex for targeting ad buys? “Essentially invalid,” said Poltrack. “There is no link, none, between the age of the specified demographic delivery of the campaign and the sales generated by that campaign.” According to Ad Age, Nielsen executives at the convention reported that “ratings demographics by age and sex had a… 0.12 correlation with actual sales produced by exposure to TV ads, where 1.0 is complete correlation and 0 signals no relationship whatsoever.” Zero-point-one-two! You’d do better using a Ouija board than Nielsen demos.
Amazingly RELATED — Agreed: “Possibly the best thing ever”