Cable Bucks Overall Ad Spending Decline

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Total advertising spending fell 1.4% in first six months of 2008, but buys for cable TV spots actually improved 8.1%, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus, the competitive advertising information service of The Nielsen Co.

Syndicated TV ads saw the second-highest growth rate, improving 7.2% from the first six months of 2007 and Spanish-language stations saw a 4.5 increase in advertising revenue. However, newspapers and B2B magazines weren’t as fortunate, reporting declines of 7.3% and 8%, respectively.

Spot radio ads took the biggest hit of the 19 media categories analyzed, tumbling 10.1% in the first two quarters of the year.

Spot TV ad buys in the Top 100 designated market areas (DMAs) rose 2.6% while their counterparts in the next 100 DMAs moved up 2.9%.

Within specific categories, the credit card services and direct response product categories showed the strongest ad spending gains, up 18.95% and 20.48%, respectively, while the pharmaceutical (-4.76%) and motion picture (-4.64%) industries were among the sectors that experienced the largest advertising declines.

Image-based Internet advertising spending fell 6% in the first half of the year. This slump was driven by a 27% drop in online ad spending by financial services companies, which decreased their spending from $1.5 billion in the first half of 2007 to $1.1 billion during the first two quarters of this year. 

Other industries—entertainment (+47%), automotive (+45%), and consumer goods (+32%)—showed strong increases in image-based online advertising during the first half of 2008.

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