Consumers in the UK Are Watching More Digital Video Content

UK consumers are increasingly consuming quality, long-form digital video content, often on TV sets. Marketers’ heads are being turned, and they’re seeking placements in similar environments.

Traditional broadcast TV remains the most common type of video content consumption in the UK, but time spent with the medium is declining, while digital video viewing time is on the up. Younger age groups are driving this change.

"The demise of the television set has been vastly exaggerated," said Bill Fisher, senior analyst at eMarketer and author of the most recent report, "UK Digital Video and TV 2018: Marketers' Focus Turns to Quality and Long-Form Content."

"Though mobile video viewing is rising fast, the preponderance of smart TVs and connected TV peripherals, like Chromecast, means the TV set is a central actor in the digital video landscape," he said.

A rich and diverse on-demand environment in the UK has helped quality, long-form content maintain a firm foothold, no matter the device used to consume it. Even among younger generations, it isn’t all about short, user-generated content.

Overall, digital video ad spend has grown rapidly alongside these advanced consumer habits. However, following some of the high-profile missteps seen on YouTube last year, something of a recalibration is underway. Marketers are keener than ever to be associated with quality, long-form content, while user-generated environments are being approached with caution.

The future of video advertising in the UK may lie somewhere between the worlds of traditional TV and hypertargeted digital.