Exclusive: Tristan Brooks on kids’ viewing habits

Published on: 11th April 2022

A changing of the guard should make child marketeers potentially revise their thinking for the coming year. Tristan Brooks, of Havas Entertainment, tells us more.

Tristan is managing partner at Azure, Havas Entertainment, a specialist media planning and buying agency focused on child markets. He writes:

Post-Christmas, kids’ commercial TV viewing is now at an all-time low. During the festive break, new devices such as tablets and smart TVs are gifted and streaming services introduced to entertain the family, which impacts on time they’d usually spend watching kids’ commercial TV channels (think Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network). This decline in viewing is nothing new and happens after every Christmas, including during lockdown. However, the viewing declines we’ve seen this year have accelerated dramatically, at a time where supply is now seriously challenged.

To put this in context, over the past five years (2017 to 2021) we’ve seen a 60% decline in kids’ commercial TV viewing for children aged four to nine. This January alone, we saw viewing for the same audience decline 30% on the previous month. In comparison to the previous January, viewing was down -49%. The problem is that, although the decline of kids’ commercial TV has been happening over many years, we’ve now reached a tipping point.

Planning TV campaigns has fundamentally changed. Agencies would plan TV weights based on the client’s objectives and budget for the campaign, informed by performance learnings. Now the conversation is being reframed around what weight of advertising can feasibly be delivered.

To read the full Viewpoint article by Tristan Brooks, which appeared in the April edition of Toy World, click here.


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