With results from iSpot.tv, the Fox Television Network averaged 15 minutes and 4 minutes in the first quarter of 2015 -- virtually flat (0.16% higher) versus the fourth-quarter period and the highest of all broadcast networks. These results include local TV ad time and exclude promotional time.
Fox News Channel was at 16:52 -- the most of any cable network (and all networks overall). It was down 3% from the previous quarter. Fox News has been posting soaring viewership due to the Presidential election news/campaigns.
After Fox, CBS is the next-largest broadcast network with commercial time -- 14:23, down 0.7%. ABC is next at 13:51, up 0.05%. NBC had the biggest change, up a strong 9% to 13:46 versus the fourth quarter of 2015. CW has the lightest advertising load at 10:43, down 6.4% from the fourth quarter 2015.
Total broadcast advertising commercial time -- national and local advertising -- on networks was virtually flat in the first quarter versus the fourth quarter of 2015. The five top English-language networks inched up 0.7%, averaging 13 hours and 13 minutes, excluding any promotional time.
Although cable networks have announced efforts to cut back on advertising time, generally, they still have more commercial time than broadcast networks.
Seventeen cable networks tally total hourly average advertising time higher than 14 minutes, with four Viacom networks in the top five -- Spike (16:43), MTV (16:21), BET (16:16), and Comedy Central (16:14). Turner networks were next: TBS (15:31) and truTV (15:17).
Some of the least commercial cluttered networks, according to iSpot.tv -- ESPN (8:33), AMC (9:43), FX (11:09); Cartoon Network (11:46); National Geographic (12:28); and TNT (12:39).
Wayne, are these stats for primetime or all dayparts? Also, do the cable figures include "spot cable" announcements as well as national messages? Thanks for any clarification you can provide.
iSpot.tv says this is just for primetime. Commercial data here for all networks -- broadcast and cable -- include all national and local commercial advertising.
Wayne: It might be interesting to use these same figures and include the average cost per minute that each of the various channels are paid. For example, data from a few years years ago showed CNN being paid around 14% more per minute than Fox cable news. Less income per ad means more ads per minute, all else being equal. Or am I being too simple-minded, ... again?
Chuck, in view of the huge difference in average minute audience favoring Fox News over CNN, I assume that you are referring to the cost per viewer, not the absolute amount that an advertiser pays per commercial. It's true that when CNN was the leader---quite a while ago----that it scored higher CPMs than Fox, but I doubt that this is true now as buyers reward channels based, mainly on the relative size of their audiences, though not necessarily the quality of their fare. As for the amount of time devoted to ads, of course, a cable channel looking for more ad revenue will increase its commercial load and Fox News is, by far the most profitable of the Fox TV vebtures so it maximizes income and profits any way it can to support the corporation. Despite their pious babbling about the ills of commercial clutter, in practice, most advertisers and their agency time buyers turn a blind eye to the excess clutter issue.