CBS Moonves: Upfront Prices Up 5% or More
My Madison Avenue sources, both buyers and sellers, have indicated this year’s upfront marketplace will likely rise to the extent it dropped last year. So if CPMs were down at CBS a percentage point or two, the market might reasonably expect CPM inflation in the May market to be of the same order. And now a word from Les Moonves: Fuggetaboutit.
After CBS’s fourth quarter earnings call, the upfront market place could be poised to rise into the plus five territory, if CBS gets its way. Here’s what the ever bullish CBS Corp. CEO told analysts on yesterday’s call about his expectations, “All the advertisers that are playing are paying plus 30% for what we offered to them last June,” and expectations for the upfront, “But we are not just looking at low-single digit increases at the upfront, because our numbers are going to [warrant] more.”
Moonves continued, “Once again heading into May and June, if we don’t get the pricing we want, we will be very happy to play this hand that we played this year.” Moonves said the sales teams were begging the network to give back promo time to sell more airtime.
Few like to posture so far in advance of the big sales event, but when you’re in the catbird seat, why not?