Amid consumer interaction with so many platforms, including traditional media and digital channels, PQ Media conjured a formula to determine how much time the average U.S. adult spends with advertising. Its conclusion: consumers are exposed to 1.59 hours per day (95 minutes) of advertising on traditional and digital media platforms in 2017, which is about 15% of their total time spent with media. In addition, individuals spend 1.84 hours a day exposed to brands.
Four media platforms and channels account for more than 85% of all advertising exposure, PQ Media found, as reported by Mediapost: radio, television, out-of-home media and search. Its data crunching also determined that if marketing media—like coupons and direct mail—were included in the equation, PQ Media estimates that total exposure to brand marketing would reach about 110 minutes.
Add to that some jaw-dropping background statistics. Advertising economist and long-time Interpublic forecaster Bob Coen estimated back in the 1960s that the average consumer is exposed to more than 3 million marketing messages during normal day-to-day activities. Take, for example, opening a refrigerator that contains 100+ branded items. PQ notes that with the proliferation of new media platforms and devices since 1960, the number of subconscious marketing messages is now probably closer to 4 million interactions per day, as of 2017.
The numbers may jump even higher when consumers deliberately engage in time with marketing media, Media post reports in its story based on the PQ Media data—such as direct marketing, experiential marketing and the likes of clipping coupons, looking at products in catalogs, attending sporting events at a brand-named stadium, choosing entertainment venues with a mobile proximity app, passing by multiple point-of-purchase displays while shopping, and watching an automobile product placement throughout a film blockbuster.
Another purview of consumer exposure to advertising comes from Nielsen, which released data last month that shows while the number of media platforms continues to grow and evolve, the share of time spent with ad-supported content has actually remained flat over the past decade, at 86% in 2017.
As Inside Radio reported, looking across a variety of ad-supported content on radio, TV, smartphones, video games and tablets, for adults the share of time spent in 2002 was 89%, just 3 percentage points higher. Nielsen points out that this was an era when avenues of consumption were mainly via television and radio.
Alongside high adoption rates for numerous devices, Nielsen points out that engagement with ad-supported content has remained strong, “in part because consumers’ time with media hasn’t remained a finite resource.” In fact, “the amount of time consumers are allocating toward media is expanding,” increasing by more than 25 hours between 2002 and 2017. “Time spent with ad-supported content has grown and maintained a consistent ratio with overall time spent.”