Ad Spending Rises in Most Media

June 3, 2010

Ad spending rose in most major types of media during Q1 2010, according to data released by Kantar Media.

Of the nineteen media types tracked by Kantar Media, thirteen experienced a spending increase in the first quarter. At the forefront, Spot TV surged 22% on what Kantar analysts term a “torrent” of additional money from the automotive, retail, financial service and political categories. Despite this growth, current spending volume in Spot TV has only recovered to a level last seen in 1997.


Other television media types also performed strongly. Network TV expenditures received a boost from the Winter Olympics and finished the period up 11.6%. Cable TV (+8.2%) and Spanish Language TV (+7.2%) each benefited from selling more ad time and strengthened demand among across a broad range of package goods and retail advertisers.

Radio Ends Long Drought
After a three-year slump, radio ad expenditures finally had a turnaround. National Spot Radio advanced 19% and was paced by higher spending from the telecom, financial service and auto categories. Local Radio (+4.6%) and Network Radio (+3%) were also up.

Print Media Mostly Lags
Print media, on the whole, continued to lag the overall ad market. Consumer Magazine spending fell 3.9% from a year ago, while Local Newspapers dropped 5.6%. There was improvement in some narrow segments, as Sunday Magazine expenditures jumped 13.7% and National Newspapers increased 9.1%, primarily from gains at the Wall Street Journal, according to Kantar.

Top Categories Increase Overall Expenditures
Of the top 10 spending categories in the first quarter, only one – direct response – fell, down by 3.2%, according to other Q1 2010 ad spending data from Kantar. Overall, expenditures for the 10 largest advertising categories rose 7.8% in the first quarter and totaled $17.95 billion.

Automotive was the leading category by dollar volume and also had the highest growth rate among the top 10, with spending up 18.6% to $3,016.8 million, ending a streak of 18 consecutive quarterly declines. Manufacturers and dealerships reacted quickly to an improving sales environment by ramping up marketing efforts with TV, magazines and radio being the main beneficiaries.

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