CBS executive vice president of research and planning David Poltrack told reporters Monday that the other networks "are just plain wrong" when they tout adults 18-49 as the most important demographic to advertisers.
Nope, it’s adults 25-54.
Such a statement coming from Poltrack is not new. He’s said it many times
before. But this time, he backed it up with a survey of more than 1,000 ad
executives conducted by an outside firm that Poltrack said validated his
But just as important, Poltrack said, advertisers weigh other considerations
beside age and sex. Important among them are income level, product-usage
information, audience composition, reach and price.
But when asked to list all of the sex/age demos they use to target their buying,
adults 25-54, as well as men and women 25-54, all outpaced the comparable 18-49
breakouts, he added, by significant margins.
Even more surprising, he said, was the finding that adults 35-64 and adults
18-34 appeared "virtually equal" to each other in importance.
ABC, for one, wasn’t buying the part about the dominance of the 25-54 demo.
According to that network’s tabulations, a little more than 68% of the money
spent in this year’s prime time upfront market was put against adults 18-49 or
About 54% of it was spent against 18-49 alone, while about one-half that amount,
27%, was spent on adults 25-54.