Bolt Media just released the results of a fascinating survey about "younger" Americans and their TV viewing habits. There’s one really interesting disconnect in the findings: while 69 percent of the 400 survey respondents between the ages of 16 and 34 said they watched TV as an activity, three out of four couldn’t name all four of the big networks (CBS, ABC, NBC and Fox).
The Bolt Media people interpret this as a sign that the Internet and movies have made huge inroads among young people and drawn them away from TV. OK, I’ll go along with that. But, how could 75 percent of the respondents be so clueless as to not know the names of the four major networks? It boggles the mind. So, while nearly seven out of 10 respondents are sitting in front of the oh-so-appropriately named boob tube, most can’t remember the name of the network airing their favorite shows. How brutal is that?
This would be equivalent to Major League Baseball fans saying they go to see the Yankees and Mets play but have no idea what leagues they’re in. Or, perhaps, a bunch of churchgoers saying that while they "religiously" attended Catholic, Episcopalian or Methodist services every Sunday, they couldn’t tell you whether said religions would be classified as Christian, Jewish or Islamic.
I wish I could think of some smart image or reputation programs the big four networks could implement to heighten awareness among this huge, semi-conscious market segment. But, considering how seemingly unaware the 16 to 34-year-olds are, this particular mountain may be just too high to climb.