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DStv numbers grow

Oracle Airtime Sales (OATS) has confirmed that there will be a 2% growth in the total number of DStv households on the TAMS panel (from 2.104 million to 2.188 million). Of the total subscriber household base, more than 1 million are now Black households.
DStv numbers growAs AGB have continued to balance the composition of the panel in terms of the number of premium and compact subscribers represented, there should be a small change to the DStv ARs achieved at a channel level.

The SAARF TAMS council plans to implement the AMPS 2009B universes to the TAMS panel on 24 August 2010. The new universes are based on the July to December 2009 AMPS fieldwork period and will again reflect the ongoing growth in the number of DStv subscribers.

Brenda Wortley, head of research and strategy at OATS comments, "We are expecting an overall average impact of less than 1% in terms of ARs (measured against a DStv target market), however it must be noted that audiences in thousands will grow by an average of 9%. The changes in terms of total viewing and the number of Pay households reflected in AMPS 09b are in line with expectations and market realities for Pay television."

The Black individuals 4+ with DStv subscriptions now make up almost 53% of DStv viewing reflecting the significant penetration DStv has gained amongst middle-income households.

"We expect very little impact on the M-Net and kykNET audiences as a result of the universes. The usual fluctuations due to programme changes and shifts in audience share because of new channels coming on the platform will be the main drivers for channel performance.

Viewership increases

On the DStv front, all channels show increases in viewership in thousands with an average of 9%. However, some channels will gain and some will lose. The channels that do well on the compact platform generally show above-average gains.

"The big issue to look out for with this universe update is the move to 15+ as the default definition of adults. This means that the traditional 16+ definition from the 24 August becomes an unweighted variable. This will make 16+ data less stable and subject to fluctuations (in terms of universe and sample) from this point forward. It is recommended that the industry does not attempt to carry through the 16+ definition, but to view this rather as a 'technical step change' and move immediately to the 15+ adult definition.

The industry should continue to plan DStv using sound planning practices, ie using break ratings and applying responsible down weights to ratings and by ensuring their DStv sample sizes within TAMs are robust and stable. Ratings will still vary at spot-by-spot, so overall campaign performance should be used to judge performance. As previously recommended, the most recent six-week source period should be used and adjustments made for programme changes.

The ongoing growth in the DStv base is now factored into the DStv rate setting process. We continue to take moderate increases and to adjust our pricing in a Cost per Thousand world, in response to the growth in both the audience base as well as advertising demand," concludes Wortley.

The next universe update based on January - June 2010 AMPS is likely to be implemented in January 2011. SAARF will advise the industry on this date.
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