There’s been explosive growth of TV consumption on our platform – 60 percent of what our customers watch on Xfinity On Demand is TV shows. It’s become the top viewed category On Demand, growing faster than movies and kids content. What’s driving all this? The fact that we are offering more current and high-quality TV choices than ever before on a time-shifted basis. And this will only get better as we head into the Fall TV season and provide more access to this season’s hottest shows across platforms.
With 400 million views each month, our Xfinity On Demand platform can offer us unique insight into how people enjoy entertainment today. The trends we derive help us rethink how we program fall TV and use our platform to bring customers everything the 2013 season has to offer. We’re calling it Xfinity Fall TV Fest.
- Premiering a new show’s pilot episode on demand before it debuts live can build buzz and drive ratings for the new series. During Fall TV Fest, we’ll be premiering more shows than ever On Demand –including Ironside (NBC), The Mindy Project (FOX), Trophy Wife (ABC), We are Men (CBS) and Welcome to the Family (NBC) – before their live air date. For each of the other nearly 50 shows set to debut, we’ll offer sneak peeks and other special content to give customers an early look.
- Catching-up Drives Ratings and "Snapping" Makes it Even Stronger. We have data that shows ratings increase when customers have an opportunity to catch up on earlier seasons before premieres. For example, we saw a ratings lift for the season premieres of Mad Men after Watchathon Week in March. And other networks saw this same lift for their shows too. And a new term– snapping – makes it even stronger. When you snap a few seasons together with the current season, you drive ratings for the current season. We are doing this with hits like Grey’s Anatomy (ABC), Law and Order SVU (NBC), Parks and Rec (NBC), and Parenthood (NBC). Every past season of these shows are available on Xfinity Streampix, giving customers the ultimate catch-up opportunity. So, we’re using Fall TV Fest to load up Xfinity On Demand with every episode from the last season of hot returning shows such as Chicago Fire (NBC), The Mindy Project (FOX), The Walking Dead (AMC),Boardwalk Empire (HBO), Homeland (Showtime), and Dance Moms (Lifetime) so our customers can catch up before the new season begins.
- Ratings increase when customers can predictably watch the entire season of a show On Demand. Once the fall season gets underway, we’ll help both existing fans and new ones who might want to "catch the train" of a buzzed-about show catch-up and stay current with every episode of the current season for more than 150 series like Chicago Fire (NBC), The Good Wife (CBS) ,Boardwalk Empire (HBO), and Homeland (Showtime).
- Mini-binge is the new binging. Yes, the weekend-long binge-viewing marathon does indeed exist as evidenced by our Watchathon Week in March. But our data suggests more people actually "mini-binge" – or watch 1-2 episodes per week right around the day the show airs live. This suggests fans are trying to keep up with their favorite shows to stay current and participate in both the physical and digital water-cooler talk the next day.
- Primetime still exists. Despite more content available across more devices, our data tells us that peak viewing time – no matter on TV, PC, tablet or smartphone - is still between 8-11 p.m., suggesting that viewers still gravitate to enjoying TV during the traditional primetime hours regardless of where and how they’re doing it.