NBC's 'Sound Of Music' Strikes Strong Ad Chord

by , Dec 13, 2013, 3:09 PM
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Rare are those network TV shows that over-deliver for advertisers in terms of ratings. But NBC's live musical show “The Sound of Music” surprised many, more than doubling marketers' expectations.

The special three-hour show last Thursday posted an eye-opening Nielsen 4.6 rating/13 share among 18-49 viewers, and 18.5 million overall average viewers. That was more than two to three times the ratings estimate from advertisers promised rating guarantees anywhere from a 1.5 to a 2.0 rating among 18-49 viewers.

What did they pay?

According to media buyers, the 30-second commercial price for the special was around $140,000 to $150,000 -- a bargain given today's network pricing for a particular rating performance. One of the chief beneficiaries: Walmart, which bought around five to six minutes of advertising -- a media buy which also included some NBC-produced vignettes.

Estimates are that about 50% to 60% of the advertising inventory in the show was sold during the upfront.

In addition, many of the original sponsors get the benefit of another airing on Saturday night, Dec. 14.

“There was definitely value in the show,” says Peter Knobloch, chief executive officer of media agency RJ Palmer. “But the overall driving force was with older viewers.” He says 25-54 viewers were more solidly behind the show than other viewer groups, posting a 10.5 rating.

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