TV Verses Digital Video

The rise of digital has, in many ways, made people doubt the relevance of TV advertising. While digital has definitely seen a massive growth, is this really true? Let’s find out!

TV Still Dominates

Despite the hype about online video, TV still take the lion’s share when it comes to time spent viewing video.

According to Nielsen, On average each day, Australians spend approximately 2 hrs and 27 minutes watching live TV and playing back recorded TV content through their TV sets (within 28 days). Even the 18-24-year-old bracket, which is the highest viewer of online content, still spent 63.1% of their video-viewing time watching TV. The national average is higher, at around 86% of respondents using TV regularly.

TV and Digital are Merging

One of the interesting things about TV and digital is how the lines between the two are becoming blurred.

On average, Aussies watched approximately 347 million minutes of catch-up or on-demand shows online. According to a survey by Screen Australia, 68% of respondents use online video subscription services like Netflix and Amazon Prime.

This is indicative of a wider trend of current media blending together into the same service across multiple channels. You can listen to the radio on the internet, you can watch videos on social media and listen to audiobooks on YouTube. Everything is blending.

Pros and Cons – TV

TV has been a staple of media since the 50s, and it’s hold over the media landscape is still an impressive achievement.


  • Almost every Australian home has a TV (97% of Australian homes – Think TV), giving the medium a massive reach.
  • It’s the number one influencer of purchasing decisions of any medium.
  • It’s the primary choice of viewing medium amongst viewers.


  • Can be very expensive. TV production and media rates do not fit the budget of every business and can be detrimental to a business if implemented without looking into budgets first.
  • Less room for error. There are a lot of factors that go into making a great TV ad (production, actors, graphics, messages etc.) so there’s a higher chance that one of those things can go wrong, rendering the TV ad not as effective as it could be.

Pros and Cons – Digital Video

Although TV is a really powerful medium, digital video holds amazing potential for brands and businesses. 


  • More cost effective than TV. Because digital video (or online video) can be hosted on more cost-effective platforms like YouTube and Facebook, the media costs are a lot more accessible.
  • Can be easier to produce. Depending on what the type of video is, you can produce a digital video for quite a low cost (for example if you’re just using an iPhone in a blog-style format.)
  • Easily shareable. Digital videos aren’t limited to the one medium that they initially get shared on. If they are successful, then they can go viral all across the web.


  • Has to fight through the noise. The benefit of TV is that it allows each individual ad its moment in the spotlight, which is something that digital video rarely does. Although we have pre-rolls on YouTube and Facebook video, there are a million different posts and videos around it fighting for your attention, making it harder to focus on the video itself.
  • Not as effective as TV. TV is the number one influencer of purchasing decisions, so it’s always going to be a more powerful tool than digital video.

TV AND Digital?

Like with most forms of advertising, TV and Digital advertising work better when used together in an integrated campaign rather than separate and isolated.

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