Arm Media DRTV in Europe

DRTV in Europe

What is the size of the DRTV market in Europe?

The European Union has been with us for over 50 years and what started out as a treaty between 6 founding countries now includes 28 member states with a total population of circa 511 million until the UK’s BREXIT vote in 2016. Together these countries account for less than 22% of the worlds population, however their combined economies produce an impressive 37% of the global GDP and they own more than 32% of the worlds telephone lines making Europe the ideal target for DRTV andHome Shopping.

DRTV, of course, is not a new TV advertising concept. It has been successfully used as an advertising medium in America since the mid 1950s. The real boost for DRTV came with the availability of freephone numbers, and the advent of credit cards as the preferred means of payment. According to Teledirect Magazine, 68% of all US TV commercials now carry a telephone number or URL, and this figure rises to around 87% after 10pm.

Western Europe only embraced DRTV in the mid 80’s, however it is estimated that TV shopping revenues in the EU are likely to grow to circa 6.4billion Euros by 2012.

Which countries in Europe are consumers more receptive to DRTV than others?

Many DRTV advertisers thought the expansion of the EU would open up new and profitable markets. Consumers in Austria, Germany, Holland, Italy, Ireland, Spain and UK have populations that like using their televisions for all manner of home shopping. Interestingly these West European countries have the most call centres per head of population.

East European countries also want to buy innovative DRTV products but the logistics (lack of call centres and credit card usage) in those countries will continue to throw up challenges meaning that DRTV operations might take several years before they deliver acceptable sales and ROI. An upside, however, is that advertisers can test DRTV for a much lower entry cost in these countries and DRTV sales are predicted to forge ahead of their less progressive neighbours.

Another country where DRTV is growing fast is Poland.

The cost of both DRTV & Infomercial airtime is very competitive (when compared to the USA) however the British, Germans & Dutch have always been inclined to buy products offered in US style creatives. An added advantage in the UK is that TV audience levels can be tracked using BARB (Broadcaster’s Audience Research Board) making media planning & buying TV airtime more accurate than any other country in Europe.

To highlight just how much the UK (population 64 million) has embraced tele-shopping there are more than twice as many home shopping styled TV channels in the UK than in Germany (population 84 million). In summary, Britain continues to be the best performing DRTV market in Europe.

If considering DRTV in Europe will you be able to monitor & track results accurately?

ARM Direct recognised several years ago that the best way to help all our DRTV clients keep ahead of their competitors was to guarantee them the ability to accurately track & analyse every TV channel’s performance on a daily basis.

Are there differences in the way DRTV operates in Europe compared to USA?

Many already successful USA DRTV advertisers assume that what they have done one side of the Atlantic can automatically be repeated on the other. The challenge is to learn from and then develop each individual European market finding ways to target the desired audience at the lowest cost-per-response. Smaller audience numbers, as most advertisers in the USA are fully aware, are not necessarily a problem in the direct response arena. What matters is the equation between the cost of the airtime and the number of sales or leads generated.

An experienced DRTV media buyer with expert knowledge of the European market can identify the type of audience demographics required for a particular product or service and negotiate airtime accordingly to generate the maximum response.

The UK and Germany have the most DRTV media avails in Europe – mainly driven by the sheer number of digital satellite & cable channels in those countries. The UK has the most Infomercial and home shopping airtime and our recommendation is to test DRTV in the UK first and then Germany, Holland and Belgium.

How do you find the right DRTV Creative & Media Agency partners?

It is important for Direct Response companies to find the right partners from day one. Each European country presents its own set of challenges and it is therefore essential to seek out a successful London based DRTV creative & media agency like ARM Direct.

Now let’s talk about what we can do for you!
Call Digby Orsmond or Shane Murphy on +44 (0)20 7224 3040
or email