An Integrated Model of Set Top Box Tuning Behavior
Posted: 24 Oct 2007 Last revised: 14 Sep 2008
Date Written: September 11, 2008
With advertising purchased based on estimates of the audience size, it is important for both researchers and media planners to understand how tuning behavior varies across set top boxes, channels, and dayparts. These questions are at the core of a call for increased accountability in television advertising. As television advertisements must be viewed to be effective, media planners must not only anticipate the size of program audience, but the likelihood that viewers will tune away during commercials. Discrepancies between the number of viewers tuned to a program and those potentially exposed to advertisements may cause firms to pay more to reach a given audience size.
In this research, we develop an integrated model of set top box tuning behavior that allows us to examine this issue. Using second-by-second tuning data, we jointly model two aspects of tuning behavior: the channel choice decision and the duration for which a set top box remains tuned to the same channel. Our findings reveal differences across channels and dayparts, not only with respect to the duration for which set top boxes remain on the channel but also in the extent of ad avoidance and the impact of program changes on channel changing, a finding of interest to media planners.
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