Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Upfront Market

"When it comes to the $9 billion-plus upfront market, it's easy for marketers to get distracted by the horse race of TV networks trying to outdo each other in terms of price increases or volume. Do that this year, and you'll lose sight of the dangers that may lie ahead when it comes to getting your ads on TV.

"Lost in all the numbers, however, is a serious consideration of the ramifications advertisers are bound to face come fall. With more viewers getting entertainment and information from the web and other emerging venues, the networks' supply of ratings is dwindling -- and so is a marketer's ability to get ads on TV without advance planning.

"The question that really remains is: What will be left later on in scatter?" asked Gary Carr, senior VP-director of national broadcast at independent media buyer TargetCast TCM, referring to ad time that is purchased closer to a show's air date. "Are [the networks] going to higher sellout levels, and only a little bit will be left later on?"

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