SMI: TV Ad Spending Down 2% in November

Advertising spending on television declined 2% in November, according to new figures from research company Standard Media Index.

Spending on cable was down 4%. Broadcast spending was up 3%, with NBC and CBS each up 6%, according to SMI.

After a weak upfront market, upfront dollars were down 4% on broadcast and 9% on cable. But the scatter market was strong for broadcast, with spending up 40% from last year. Cable scatter spending was up 22%.

SMI says that Viacom’s MTV and Comedy Central were the only networks among the top 20 cable channels to show ad revenue growth in the market. Comedy Central was up 9% and MTV was up 3%.

Strong TV spending categories included clothing and fashion accessories, consumer electronics and telecommunications.

Overall ad spending was flat in November, with digital media showing the biggest growth, up 11%.

“We definitely saw advertisers returning to the market in November as consumer confidence lifted and brands backed that lower gas prices would flow through to increased holiday spending,” James Fennessy, SMI’s chief commercial officer, said in a statement. “As expected, digital continues to do well but we saw the major broadcasters capitalize most effectively on the late ad dollars in the market. They seem to be better at influencing pricing than the cable networks at the moment who look like they are battling hard for every available dollar.”

Standard Media Index gets its spending figures directly from the computer systems of media agency groups representing about 80% of the market.

(Photo via Ervins Strauhmanis's FlickrImage taken on Sept. 19, 2014 and used per Creative Commons 2.0 license. The photo was cropped to fit 3x4 aspect ratio.)

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.