Giraffe Insights: ‘Covid-19 fuels trends to digital kids content, but TV is still king for advert inspiration’

Covid-19 has been a significant factor in accelerating existing trends towards digitalisation in the children’ market, with over half of all kids across nine European countries now regularly accessing video content online and via on-demand services.

These are the findings of a new study from the UK-based specialist kids, youth, and family research agency, Giraffe Insights, who – to mark World Children’s Day today (Friday, November 20th) – has conducted a ‘ground-breaking international study’ into family viewing, surveying over 3,500 families across nine European markets.

The research has found that children in major European markets, including the UK, Netherlands, Germany, and the Czech Republic, are now more likely to watch a video on demand or online than on live TV.

According to Giraffe Insights, the UK is the closest to a totally digital future with two thirds of kids watching video content via on demand services, such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney + and over half also watching content through online platforms such as YouTube.  This contrasted with the fact that less than half of UK kids said they had watched content live on the TV channel in the week prior to this research being conducted.

In markets such as the Czech Republic, online viewing is booming, with almost two thirds of children viewing online video content. Even in more traditionally linear dominant markets such as Poland and Italy, online videos now make up a significant proportion of their weekly content intake.

However, Giraffe Insights states that ‘it’s not all doom and gloom for non-digital channels’ and that TV is still king for inspiration.

TV adverts and shows are still kids’ top source of inspiration across Europe for Christmas gifts (48 per cent), surpassing YouTube ads and videos (37 per cent), shops (35 per cent), friends (29 per cent) and online searches (24 per cent).

Maxine Fox, managing director at Giraffe Insights, said: “This exciting piece of research comes at a time where brands need to understand and respond to the changing environment and the impact this is having on consumer behaviour across the globe.

“Whilst this study highlights the acceleration in kids digital viewing across Europe, it also acts to remind us that not everything is changing, with live TV still king for inspiration.

“We have been tracking behaviours among kids and parents throughout this period to be able to provide our clients with strategic insights not currently available anywhere else.”

This research was conducted with 3,500 kids and parents across 9 markets – UK, Germany, France, Poland, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Netherlands and Czechia.  For more information about this research and our expertise please contact: