Most Buyers Plan to Spend at Least as Much in 2023 Upfronts as Last Year

A closeup of U.S. money
(Image credit: Yuriy Kulik/Getty Images)

Despite a weak scatter market and concerns about a pending recession, most marketing and agency executives expect to spend as much or more in the upcoming upfront market than they did a year ago, according to a survey by

iSpot found that 78% of those surveyed expected overall marketing budgets to increase or remain the same. And when it comes to TV, 74% said they saw themselves spending much more, a bit more or the same as during last year’s upfronts.

Most will continue to move ad dollars to streaming. The report said 30% of those surveyed are allocating at least 20% of their upfront budget towards streaming platforms.

When asked which streaming platforms were going to see upfront spending, Hulu was named most often by the marketers, followed by YouTube, Peacock and Roku.

Streaming Ad Spend

Chart shows where advertisers plan to spend their streaming dollars. (Image credit:

Flexibility has been a watchword in the last two upfronts as clients have sought looser terms and more options when making upfront ad commitments. This year, 50% of clients say their commitment will be as flexible as they’ve been, with 39% planning to be more flexible and 11% looking to be less flexible.

iSpot said the shift to streaming has brands and agencies thinking about new currencies, with 69% of those surveyed indicating they were very interested or somewhat interested in transacting on nonlegacy currencies — as opposed to Nielsen — as during year’s upfront market.

iSpot surveyed more than 519 brand and agency executives between February 24 and March 24 to conduct the study.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.