Automakers Hit Gas on Cable Spending

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During the first half of this year, auto ad spending on cable TV increased 24.1%, a bigger rise than on any other medium, according to data released Thursday by Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

From January-June, overall automotive ad spending was more than $6.7 billion, a gain of 7.4% compared with the same period last year. Spending on cable hit $921.3 million, a jump of just over 24%, representing 13.1% of automotive ad budgets, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

Ford Motor Co. led the way by doubling its cable ad budget to $136 million, while Volkswagen of America Inc. increased its cable spending 38% to $35.5 million and Honda Motor Co. reached $71.3 million.

Network radio saw the biggest drop in auto advertising, down 26.3% to $15.1 million, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. That was partially caused by Ford, Toyota and DaimlerChrysler reducing their radio budgets in the first half of the year.

Nearly 80%, or $5.3 billion, of all automotive dollars were placed in television, with 11%, or $781 million, placed in national magazines.