Just days before the 2012-2013 upfront TV ad market is set to begin, the TVB, the television stations’ advertising trade group, is making a case that spot TV can be cheaper than network TV -- at least as it concerns program pricing in the scatter market.
Analyzing the first quarter of 2009 to the second quarter of 2012, research says among 25-54 viewers, spot TV can give marketers a 25% savings in prime-time versus network scatter buys -- $31.51 versus $37.03 for network.
In addition, there is a 42% cheaper spot TV media buy in early morning ($11.18 versus $20.02 for network); 31% in early news ($14.96 versus $19.98); and 60% for late night ($13.37 versus $28.81). The research even says that spot TV is cheaper than national syndication scatter TV pricing: $21.38 versus $32.54 for an adults 25-54 schedule.
The comparison was made using comparable geographic/distribution outlets. The data used TSA -- Total Survey Area -- levels to mimic network scatter’s geographic buy distribution pattern. TVB worked with SQAD, the TV cost-forecasting firm.
TBA is a geographic area term that includes a market’s DMA -- Designated Metro Area -- plus certain counties located outside the DMA. DMA, a Nielson area definition, pertains to the counties in which TV stations obtain the highest proportion of a viewing audience.
For years, media analysts have theorized that spot TV is more expensive than other national TV media -- but perhaps more targeted for marketers.
Steve Lanzano, president of the TVB, stated: “Comparative research found that spot TV offers marketers three significant, fundamental advantages –- cost, inventory, and targetability. At the same time, spot TV provides a more accurate representation of the ratings deliveries in local markets because a 5.7 national rating for a program may be as low as 3.3 in one market or as high as 10.0 in another."