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Cable Shines as Nielsen Finds 0.5% Gain in Q1 Ads - Broadcasting & Cable

Cable Shines as Nielsen Finds 0.5% Gain in Q1 Ads

TV Gainers: Cable, African-American, Spanish-Language
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U.S. advertising in traditional media rose a meager 0.5% in the first quarter, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus, with cable TV, African-American TV and Spanish-language TV outperforming the average while two broadcast-TV categories were under.

Internet advertising was not included in the analysis.

Cable TV and African-American TV were tied as the second-best-performing of 17 categories with 12.9% increases, trailing only national Sunday supplements in newspapers, which rose 19.2%. Other TV categories registering gains were Spanish-language TV (7.7%) and syndication TV (2.3%). Meanwhile, network TV registered a 3.4% decline and spot TV was off 3.8%.

The figures were for the three months ended March 31.The African-American-TV category counts any program with audience composition at 50% or greater, Nielsen said, while Spanish-language TV covers both broadcast and cable channels.

“Advertising was mixed across media with gains in some mediums and declines in others,” Nielsen added.

For the top 10 advertising categories, aggregate ad spending fell 0.47% to $10.395 billion. Decliners included No. 1 category factory automotive (8.32%), No. 5 telephone services-wireless (0.38%), No. 6 motion pictures (1.14%) and department stores (0.44%).

The other six categories in the top 10 registered increases. These gainers were No. 2 pharmaceutical (0.13%), No. 3 auto dealerships (0.38%); No. 4 quick-service restaurants (4.36%), No. 8 direct response (16.07%), No. 9 credit-card services (8.23%) and No. 10 financial-investment services (8.53%).

Earlier this month, TNS Media Intelligence weighed in with a 0.6% ad-growth estimate for the first quarter, but its cable-TV estimate was sharply lower at 4.1%. TNS included web advertising while Nielsen Monitor-Plus did not.

Media Category Q1 2007 vs. Q1 2008 % Change

No. 1 National Sunday Supplement: 19.2%

No. 2 Cable TV: 12.9%

No. 2 African-American Television*: 12.9%

No. 4 Network Radio: 10%

No. 5 Spanish-Language TV**: 7.7%

No. 6 Outdoor: 2.9%

No. 7 Syndication TV: 2.3%

No. 8 Spot TV: Top 100: -0.4%

No. 9 National Magazine: -1.3%

No. 10 Network TV: -3.4%

No. 11 Spot TV: 101-210: -3.8%

No. 12 Spot Radio: -4.9%

No. 13 FSI Coupon: -4.9%

No. 14 Local Newspaper: -5.4%

No. 15 National Newspaper: -6.2%

No. 16 B-to-B: -6.1%

No. 17 Local Sunday Supplements: -13.5%

Total Advertising Spending 0.5%

Source: Nielsen Monitor-Plus (January-March 2007 and January-March 2008)

* African-American television includes broadcast network, cable and syndication programs with an African-American audience composition of 50% or greater, BET and TV One.

** Spanish-Language television includes broadcast, cable and station coverage.

Rank Top 10 Product Categories

Q1 2008 ($ million)/Q1 2007 ($ million)/% change

No. 1 Automotive: $2,695.8/$2,940.6/-8.32%

No. 2 Pharmaceutical: $1,311.7/$1,310/0.13%

No. 3 Auto Dealerships: $1,113.7/$1,109.5/0.38%

No. 4 Restaurant-Quick Service: $1,028.3/$985.2/4.36%

No. 5 Telephone Services-Wireless: $971.9/$975.7/-0.38%

No. 6 Motion Picture: $957.3/$968.4/-1.14%

No. 7 Department Store: $717.4/$720.6/-0.44%

No. 8 Direct-Response Product: $670.2/$577.4/16.07%

No. 9 Credit-Card Services $473/$437/8.23%

No. 10 Financial-Investment Services: $455/$419.2/8.53%

Total Top 10 Product Categories: $10,394.8/$10,444.1’-0.47%

Source: Nielsen Monitor-Plus (January-March 2007 and January-March 2008)

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