The SAG-AFTRA strikes drove the proportion of ad spending against entertainment reruns up to 79% and the share of spend in new entertainment programming down to 20.9% as of June, marking the deepest dip in share for new shows since the pandemic, according to media-buying data and planning tools company Guideline.
The June share for new programming spend represented a 10-percentage-point drop from May alone, reports Guideline, which acquired Standard Media Index and SQAD in 2022.
During July and August 2020, when the pandemic shut down studio production, new entertainment programming spend dropped to 18.5% and 20.7%, respectively.
Over the last 6.5 years, the average spend ratio has been 69% for repeat programming to 31% for new programming.
“We can expect to see a shift in favor of Upfront buying – but it may be less pronounced,” says Darrick Li, vice president, North America media owners at Guideline. “The strikes come at a time of historically lower new entertainment programming, and advertisers will want to have more flexibility to tap into unsold inventory and/or place their investments closer to the air date in order to mitigate risk tied to a short runway of new content. We may see media owners respond amicably, as this would give them a better understanding of the reach and target audience composition of their programming – which would ultimately be reflected in ‘scatter premium’ pricing.”