National TV Ad Decline Moderates In December, Falls 2%

Although December’s national linear TV ad spending improved compared to previous months, it still declined 2%, according to Standard Media Index -- to roughly $3.7 billion.

Looking at the entire fourth quarter, the national TV marketplace was down 6% -- an improvement from the 16% decline of the third quarter.

For the calendar year 2022, national TV ad spend was down 5% versus the 2021 year -- and 14% lower than 2019.

SMI says that when including media buys for national TV deals for streaming NFL content -- as well as that for Amazon Prime Video’s “Thursday Night Football” -- national TV spending grew 2%.

When including “TNF” among all fourth-quarter sports programming, national TV sports ad spend was up 9% for the month, and 2% higher for the fourth quarter of 2022 versus the same period the year before.



According to SMI, national TV ad spend for sports programming grew 8% in the fourth quarter, while broadcast sports was virtually flat.

Entertainment content was down 10% for the fourth quarter; with news programming 7% lower.

Consumer packaged goods (CPG) marketers -- the largest TV ad category -- were up 6% year over year in December; general business advertisers grew 12%; and entertainment marketers, 3% more.

But retail marketers -- the third-biggest category -- were down 6%, while financial services lost 23% and hard-hit technology marketers sank a massive 28%.

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