Sports Programming Increases Upfront Ad Spend

Share of upfront TV advertising spending has increased for sports programming -- and to a lesser extent, for drama programming.

Barclays Research says overall sports programming has taken a 26% share of upfront TV dollars for the current 2016-2017 season to date -- up from 25% the year before and 19% in the 2014-2015 TV season.

Non-sports entertainment commands a 71% number, down from 72%, while news programming remains the same at 3%. Barclays data comes from Standard Media Index.

NFL programming has seen its upfront spending fortunes rise to command a 14% share of advertising dollars -- up from 9.1% a year ago. NCAA basketball is at a 3.9% share from 3.1%, and NCAA football at a 3% share from a 1.8%.  Only regular-season NBA basketball has seen a drop -- to 2.1% from 3.2%.

All drama programming on TV  -- broadcast and cable -- is now at a 29.1% share from a 27.3% number.

Kannan Venkateshwar, media analyst for Barclays, says that overall, traditional TV companies seem to be more conservative for next season -- only starting up 38 news series from 42 the year before, the lowest amount in five years.

“With viewership under pressure and advertising revenues proving insufficient to support growing cost of content, networks appear to be pushing studios more for a bigger share of back-end revenues,” he notes.



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