Quarter one has been big for TV…..
No one (not even Nine), could have predicted the success of the “most talked about social experiment” in TV reality history – Married At First Sight.
Gone are the days of people tuning in to watch contestants slave over technique & skill to fufill their dream of becoming a chef, or proclaimed DIY renovators shedding blood, sweat and tears in the hope of making a few bucks to fund their next reno. We are living in a time where Australians crave drama, romance and scandal.
In 2018, MAFS had an average metro viewership per episode of 1.3mil with the finale/reunion hitting 1.8mil metro viewers. To 2019, average audience has grown 7%, with the final reaching a whopping 1.986mil metro viewers. MAFS has bucked the trend of gradually declining TV audience due to fragmentation and the ever increasing ways to consume content. Nine are proclaiming that this is the best start they have had to a TV year in Nine history, with MAFS audiences spilling over into other programs as well.
But what did Nine predict?  In Sydney for People 25-54, Nine predicted the finale episode (and selling spots to advertisers as) of MAFS delivering 7 tarps. With a 15 sec spot costing around $12K and a cost per tarp of around $1,700 (highly inefficient), advertisers avoided it waiting to see audience delivery.The actual delivery was 12 tarps, so Advertisers flocked to buy short terms MAFS spots.
Seven on the other hand overcooked audience predictions for MKR, & found themselves in a hot mess with average viewership down 25% so far (scheduled to wrap up after Easter). In it’s 10th Season, MKR is struggling to retain it’s long-standing loyalty losing a big chunk of viewers to the drama and scandal of MAFS. On further investigation, Seven had predicted this season to do as well as last year, tarping spots in Sydney around 7. In reality spots rated 4.5 tarps. An over promise and under delivery, a media buyers worst nightmare.
And what about Dancing with the Stars on 10? The Network predicted 5.2 tarps in Sydney against People 25-54, however as the season has progressed a gradual decline has followed averaging at 2.7 tarps per episode.
It is obvious that no network either by using a “forecast” model that incorporates Oztam TV ratings, programming tags and trending algorithms OR the traditional methods of “Same time Last Year” or “Last 4 weeks” audiences, there is never going to be an exact science to predict audience. A media buyers job is to make calculated decisions based on cost efficiency and the best investment of the advertising spend. No network can accurately predict what Australians will watch on TV, and until then we continue to balance the risks with the science, manage the Networks delivery and hold them accountable to what they promise to deliver.


Southern Cross Austereo are now the official re-seller of Sound Cloud as of April 1 – Sound Cloud is the world’s largest open audio platform (similar to Spotify, iHeart) and has on average of 2.5 million Australian users.
Sound Cloud has around 1 in 5 of their users paying for the platform, whereas Spotify have 2 in 3.
Compared to Spotify, ads are “non-skippable”. Sound Cloud was previously only sold programmatically.


Latest news within Apple TV+
As you have probably heard, Apple is finally launching their Video On Demand (VOD) Service Apple TV+ later this year.
Now with Apple, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, they are known as innovators (the late Steve Jobs made a career around this premise). Their company reputation alongside their price premium was built on this premise, so it’s very interesting that Apple is so late to the game in launching a VOD service

Apple TV is not an innovation of any kind. It is simply a copy, a clone. Apple may cast Hollywood Stars to promote the service, albeit a few are actually going into production for content for Apple TV. However Apple are so far behind in content play that it will take a few years and hundreds of billions of dollars to catch up and if so, even have a competitive offering. Netflix, Stan, Amazon & Google are already in the Australian market for paid VOD, not to mention the defunct Channel 7’s Presto. Australia has always been a market for duopoly and one challenger when it comes to long term business (think Coles/Woolworths and Aldi, or Telstra/Optus and Vodafone). So it will be hard pressed to see Apple TV+ become successful. The only advantage Apple has is consumers loyalty to the brand and a larger distribution platform via iPhone. Apple loyalists are a crew of disciples who still believe in the brand but have now delved into the technical side. Presumably though Apple’s unique operating system will be cast aside as that historically makes it very difficult for operating and interfacing on other systems with Apple powered devices. Time will tell if loyalty is enough to ensure Apple TV is a success.for advertisers.


SMI Graph

The Media Agency market suffered in February, recording its largest percentage decline in ad spend in almost ten years. Compared to the same (record) month last year, all major media reported lower ad spend as demand fell away.
TV is most affected by the Olympics inflation of same month last year, with its total down 11.7% (ex Government). Digital ad spend is down 7.4%, Outdoor 2.1% and Radio 2.4%.

The financial year ahead is looking a little subdued with the total spend back 1.2% at $4.56 billion with only the Digital (+2.6%), Outdoor (+6.7%) and Radio (+2.5%) recording gains.


  1. Married at First Sight Finale pulled in a whopping 1,986,000 Metro viewers
  2. The Split: Westpac & Mamamia collaborate on a new divorce podcast
  3. Today Show’s ratings have been in freefall since Karl left, there are rumours he is on the return
  4. Apple have gone into the finance space releasing a virtual credit card – more details to be released
  5. MAFS has the highest social interaction so far of 2019 – 6 million interactions across Facebook, Instagram & Twitter
  6. Apple are launching “Apple Arcade”, a subscription based model for Gamers. This will launch globally in the last quarter of 2019. There will be access to over 100+ games.