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Will Ad-Skipping Kill Television?

Well, who knows, but it sure makes a great title for a provocative new study from Cambridge, Mass.-based Forrester Research
on the impact of personal video recorders and video-on-demand services over the next five years. Among the study's findings: Half of TV viewers will have PVRs or VOD by 2007. PVR viewers will likely watch recorded shows more than 60% of the time. As a result, ad-viewing will drop by 19%. And marketers say that's not good. In fact, it's so bad that three out of four surveyed said they'd chop their budget for 30-second spots by at least 20% once PVR penetration reaches 30 million. The good news is new forms of advertising will benefit, like product placement, sponsorship and interactive advertising. ...

Interpublic Group of Cos.'Initiative Media North America
said in its analysis of Nielsen's November sweeps ratings data through mid November that the basic-cable networks have outscored the broadcast nets on nine nights, vs. seven a year ago and two in 2000. On each of those nine nights, cable attained a 50% prime time household share or better, IM said. Besides typically winning Friday and Saturday nights, basic cable also "managed to split the viewing audience on one Tuesday night and on multiple Sunday nights. This is a remarkable achievement, since Sunday is usually regarded as one of the biggest programming nights for broadcast television." How is cable doing it? The short answer, at least for adults 18-49: sports and movies, Initiative said. ...

Nielsen Media Research
reported last week that ad spending for the first three quarters of 2002 was up 3.8%, based on data collected by its Monitor-plus
ad-tracking service. By comparison, competitor CMR
reported a week ago that spending was up 2.2%. Both trackers said Internet spending was down, although Monitor-Plus had the medium down marginally (1%), while CMR had it down 18%. The reported gain for network TV was close: Monitor-Plus had it at 7.9%, while CMR said 7.1%. For cable, Monitor-Plus reported a 3% gain, while CMR said cable sales were down 1%. Another difference: Spanish- language TV. CMR had it growing almost 26% while Monitor-Plus showed growth for Spanish TV but not nearly as much, just 4.3%.


Busch Entertainment's Sea World
theme-parks account has been hooked by Omnicom Group's DDB Worldwide, Chicago. The estimated $15 million account, which was dropped last week by Interpublic Group of Cos.'Campbell-Ewald
after a nine-month stay, joins Busch's Busch Gardens and Discovery Cove theme parks at DDB. Sea World is looking to have a new ad campaign ready by early next year. ...

North America's Pepsi brand has just begun an account review to replace its multicultural agency, WPP Group's Uniworld, dropped two months ago. Chisholm-Mingo Group, GlobalHue
and SpikeddB
are seeking the estimated $10 million business. ...

Kmart Corp.
has tapped Chisholm-Mingo
to handle its African-American advertising and Cultura, Dallas, its Hispanic advertising. They replace GlobalHue
on that estimated $15 million account. GlobalHue reportedly was owed $3 million by the financially ailing retailer. GlobalHue, in which Interpublic holds a 49% stake, just broke its first multicultural campaign for Chrysler Group's Dodge division, using broadcast and cable networks as well as Spanish-language TV; it landed that estimated $150 million account last summer.


Mcdonald's Corp. announced a new TV campaign supporting its Happy Meals and Mighty Kids Meals tie-in with Walt Disney Pictures' animated holiday flick Treasure Planet, a futuristic retelling of Treasure Island. Action figures and other collectibles will be given out as part of the meals. TV spots will target both children and adults, via Leo Burnett Co., Chicago. ...

Kmart is running a holiday-season TV campaign for its Joe Boxer line. In a new spot, Vaughn Lowery, clad in boxer shorts, is shown dancing the "Antler Boogie," a variation on his recent "Boxer Boogie" dance. Tbwa/Chiat/Day handles Joe Boxer. ...

Ford Motor Co. broke a new campaign for its Taurus over the weekend, its first national TV drive in about two years. In the interim, the Taurus got regional TV support via Ford dealerships.The single 30-second spot shows a business exec stunned to learn that the car he's in is not the company car but his chauffeur's own car. WPP Group's J. Walter Thompson Co., Detroit, is the agency. The midsize car got about $11 million in ad support last year, according to CMR data.