23 Apr Cutting the Cord: A Millennial Trend?
A recent article on Variety.com talks about the new millennial trend of “cutting the cord” on TV. Streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video are changing the way viewers, particularly the “millennials,” are consuming media. Many feel that these types of streaming services are now shaping what the future of television programming may look like. With that being said, Nielsen, the company who records TV viewership are denying the idea that young consumers are abandoning cable and satellite TV. Nielsen executives states that consumers who have subscription-video-on-demand service(s) in addition to their cable subscriptions are more likely to drop their SVOD service. Glenn Enoch, Senior VP of Audience Insights for Nielsen, actually said that 93% of homes that had both offerings were more likely to keep cable and drop their SVOD services. The Variety.com article mentioned a quote from Enoch, in which he states, “Cable may have a little more staying power than it’s actually being given credit for recently.” I definitely think that cable will be around long-term because I think it carries a stronger backbone than its SVOD competitors, knowing from first-hand experience that Netflix isn’t very enjoyable when a weak or broken WiFi signal interrupts me from watching a show. I can see how millennials are more inclined to turn to SVOD services than cable because the internet is what, if not all, we know. Enoch also discussed how younger U.S. population is progressively mobile and apt to add/drop cable service as it moves to new locations. A seasonal shift has also been reported by Nielsen in cable-subscriber churn, with much of it happening within the first and fourth quarters of the year and less during the second and third. A very good point made in the Variety.com article is that consumers of cable may not being dropping it, but people who don’t have it yet might not be adding it. Pricing is probably a big contender, especially for the younger population, as a Netflix subscription costs just $7.99 per month while cable packages, such as Verizon Fios, could cost upward of $100 per month. Variety.com reported that Nielsen executives “suggested the company would have more to say about ‘cord cutting’ in weeks to come.” I feel like this “cord cutting” trend may not be so trendy, relating back to the idea that consumers who have cable are not dropping it or are not “cutting their cords.” On the contrary, I can see how millennials may be “cutting the cord” for the future of television consumption.