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McCann Universal Cuts Estimates Of 2007 Ad Growth

Universal McCann has lowered its estimate of 2007 U.S. ad spending increases over 2006 from 4.8% to 3.1% after seeing the full-year numbers for 2006, with broadcast and cable .

Back in December, it had predicted a 5.2% gain in 2006 over 2005, but that turned out to be only a 3.9% gain, and that was in a year with Olympics.

The total ad spending in 2007 is projected at 290.3 billion.

Those projections were delivered by Universal McCann Senior VP Robert Coen at a briefing for analysts Tuesday in New York.

Coen said he did not see "much, if any" ad revenue growth for the major broadcast TV networks in 2007, saying they aren't likely to see increase demand until prices come down "dramatically," given that there are "plenty fo perceived acceptable alternative choices."He predicts the Big Four networks will see a 5.7% decline in ad revenue in 2007 over 2006.

Saying cable was facing similar downward forces on pricing, cable is projected to show only modest ad revenue gains (1.4%).

But while TV advertising has leveled off, the emerging media category is taking off. According to a presentation by Magna Global at the same briefing, ad expenditures in social network marketing are expected to grow by a whopping 148% to $685 million, and online search by 29% to a nothing-to-sneeze-at $8.7 billion.