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Cable Technology Feature Article

June 20, 2012

Zenith Projections See Broadcasts Losing While Cable and Social Ad Spending Goes Up

By David Gitonga, TMCnet Contributing Writer

Zenith Optimedia has released its recent ad spending statistics for 2012, and it seems there are both losers and winners. On top of the list of winners are social networks, mobile and cable.

Zenith projects a 3.6-percent ad spending increase in 2012 with stronger growth expected in 2013 and 2014. While increased spending will be most significant on the Internet, TV dollars will continue to see cable spending go up while network TV takes a hit.

The media agency said “the trend will likely continue as cable networks continue to add quality programming to their lineups.” Network TV is expected to see a 1-percent drop in revenue in 2012 while cable will see a 10-percent increase. Syndication spending is expected to be off 12 percent.

As Olympic programming and college football’s BCS bowls move to cable, it is expected that broadcast will fall by 2.5 percent in 2013, with a 3-percent drop in 2014. The largest network TV spenders will be quick-serve restaurants, automotive, telecoms and pharmaceuticals.  

Cable networks that offer original programming alternatives are expected to see a 10.4-percent spending increase in 2013 and a further 11-percent increase in 2014 – up from a 10-percent growth in 2012.

According to Zenith, the use of social media by cable networks has been a welcomed move. “Viewers seem to respond particularly well to network events,” officials said. “As advertisers seek more ways to engage their fragmented, multitasking audience, we expect to see more social TV events taking place in the future.”

There has been a lot of experimentation on using multiplatform content to create engagement among cable networks. The last season of “Top Chef” on Bravo saw a social media and fan contest that attracted eight million live streams – more than a quarter of the television audience.

Zenith says the Olympics should bring broadcast TV money at an 8-percent increase with spot marketplace growth for 2013 and 2014 expected to stand at 3 and 4 percent, respectively.

Edited by Braden Becker

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