Nielsen's Local Television Market Universe dropped from an
estimated 114,649,310 TV homes in 2011-2012 to 114,173,690, a decrease of
475,620. Nielsen said the decrease may be attributable to both findings from the 2010 Census and a change on consumer behavior driven by technology.
"The 2012-2013 universe estimates are the first to reflect the 2010 Census results for demographic details (i.e. age, sex, and ethnicity) as well as ethnic households," said Nielsen in a statement. "Accordingly, some of the year-to-year changes reflect adjustments rather than true one year population changes."
"In addition, the latest estimates reflect a continued technological shift where increased viewing options-from over the top services to streaming devices-have driven a pattern of some change in consumer behavior," said Nielsen, which noted that it is working with clients "on the evolution of the current definition of a TV household and a TV device for their ratings services, potentially qualifying video content delivered to a TV via the Internet."
The top 38 TV markets held their position from last year's
Local Television Market Universe Estimates. Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle
Creek, Oklahoma City and Anchorage were the biggest gainers, picking up three
slots in market rank, while the most significant markets to drop in rank were
Birmingham and Palm Springs (-3), and a bunch that slipped two spots, including
Harrisburg-Lancaster-Lebanon-York, Albuquerque-Santa Fe and Roanoke-Lynchburg.
Notably, New Orleans gained one spot, increasing its TV
universe by over 2,000 homes. It is currently No. 51, following a slide from
No. 43 to 53 in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.
Last year's new rankings featured much more leapfrogging in
the large markets. Washington, D.C., hopped over Atlanta in 2011, while Seattle
did the same to Phoenix. Pittsburgh, Raleigh-Durham and Indianapolis were also
among the larger markets to move up in rank last year.