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In an exclusive column for ToyNews, each month John Conlon, VP Director of Research at Nickelodeon UK, will present the latest research on kids and their families. Don’t miss this essential guide for anyone in the toy business.

Audience Watch: Understanding pre-schoolers TV viewing habits

Trust is a lifelong essential. It’s important to us all, but is unsurprisingly perhaps most important for parents who have pre-school children. 

As young children develop their core skills, adapt to the world around them and begin to make their own choices, parental trust is vital.

Through our qualitative brand research we’ve found that children aged two to three years are predominantly influenced by their parents, but by three and a half years they have growing independence and are beginning to make their own decisions. Parents, therefore, expect pre-school channels to provide entertainment and learning in a safe and trusted environment, both for the individual and for entire family viewing. 

Our research shows mums specify trust as one of the key drivers when choosing which channels to watch with their little ones, and therefore content needs to be engaging yet suitable.

With the Nick Jr. channels averaging 3.4 million kids and 8.5 million adults in 2012, it is imperative that we understand their viewing habits, and having spoken to mums in-depth, we also know families lead increasingly busy lives.

Providing a multi-platform experience which parents and children can enjoy together, safely from their home or while on the move, is a must. And there is a definite desire for a one-stop shop of inquisitive, yet safe exploration on air and online. And more than ever it is important to deliver the best imaginative and parent-approved content, so that pre-school TV channels can hold the interest of kids as they grow and move into an older demographic.

We believe ‘Every day is an Adventure’, especially for our young audience, and we are proud to say that plenty of mums seem to agree – so much so that they trust us and won’t hesitate to recommend us to others.

About the author

John Conlon is Viacom International Media Networks VP Director of Research, UK Cluster. Overseeing all of VIMN’s research activity within the UK, Australia and Eastern Europe, John’s focus is to guide and support the development of VIMN’s business units through the provision of audience intelligence, analysis and insight.

John has overseen numerous research initiatives including brand positioning and consumer product studies, as well as audience investigations.

For research and advertising enquiries please contact partnerships@nickelodeon.co.uk

For licensing and retail opportunities please contact consumerproducts@nickelodeon.co.uk

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