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Myers Sees 2005 Ad Slowdown

10/06/2004 10:30 AM Eastern

Reflective of an overall slowdown, advertising spending on network and local/regional cable is expected to ease next year.

Advertising outlays on national cable networks will grow at an 8% clip to an estimated $15.8 billion in 2005, while budgets allocated against local/regional avails on cable may advance at a 9% clip to some $5.58 billion, according to projections by industry publication Jack Myers Report.

These growth rates for next year signify downturns for the two media from the current period, according to the recently updated “2004-05 Myers Media Spending Forecast.”

In his revised research, Myers pegged ad spending on national cable networks at almost $14.7 billion, a total that would represent a 9.6% gain over 2003 levels. Similarly, advertising on local/regional cable was projected to increase at an 11% rate this year to $5.12 billion.

But the cable outlets will not be alone in 2005: Myers is projecting that all 11 measured media -- newspapers, broadcast, local/national spot, broadcast syndication, radio, yellow pages, magazines, online and outdoor, too -- will experience a slowing in growth or an actual decrease next year.

The forecast now calls for broadcast and broadcast syndication to ring up 2% gains in 2005 to $17.7 billion and $2.97 billion, respectively, while local/national spot could decline 1% to $26.2 billion. Newspapers (off 1% to $45.8 billion) and yellow pages (down 2% to $13.8 billion) are the other media expected to suffer budget erosion next year.

All told, Myers anticipates that total advertising spending will improve 2.2% to $185.5 billion in 2004.

In addition to typical post-election and post-Olympic Games withdrawals, Myers wrote, “Bigger-than-expected cracks are appearing in the media economy as marketers are becoming increasingly wary of the potential impact of low consumer confidence, growing national deficits and the reality that a Republican-controlled Congress and White House will push the United States deeper into a wartime economy.”

Conversely, spending forecasts for 2004 were revised upward from original projections made back in December 2003, when the publication was calling for 5.8% amelioration. Overall, Jack Myers Reports now estimates that total advertising will increase 6.3% to $181.5 billion in 2004. Myers attributes the upsurge to more marketers’ investments in outdoor, magazines and online vehicles, adding that the latter medium is registering by far the highest growth rates: 25% this year to $7.81 billion and 23% to $9.61 billion in 2005.

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