Online players are catching up with traditional TV as the main sources of consumers’ favorite TV shows, indicating that online video services’ investments in original programming are paying off, per results from a Hub Entertainment Research study. In fact, almost 7 in 10 subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) subscribers say that original programming makes them more likely to keep their subscription
Among TV viewers who started watching their favorite show within the past year, 53% watch it on a set-top box, while 40% do so using online sources. Just 2 years ago, respondents were twice as likely to watch their favorite show using a set-top box (64%) than an online TV source (31%).
Live TV remains the single most common place to watch viewers’ new favorite shows, with 34% saying that’s their viewing source. By comparison, 15% watch their favorite show on DVR, and 3% using video-on-demand.
As for online sources, Netflix is the clear leader: 22% say that Netflix is the main source they use to watch their favorite show, compared to 5% using Hulu.
Not too surprisingly, respondents come across their favorite shows in different ways depending on the source of their viewing. Among those watching their show on a set-top box, TV ads (39%) were the top program discovery method, ahead of face-to-face / phone conversations (29%). For those watching their favorite show online, word-of-mouth is most prevalent, with conversations (30%) were the leading discovery method, followed by general buzz about the show (14%), a source that barely figures into the equation for set-top box viewers.
About the Data: The results are based on a survey of 1,200 viewers in the US aged 16-74 who watch at least 5 hours of TV per week and who have broadband access.