National spot radio up 17.7% in 2010


National Spot Radio bounced back with a strong year in 2010, following a dismal 2009. The 17.7% increase was driven by strong demand across auto, telecomm, retail, consumer products, entertainment and the active political season in the run-up to November’s elections.

At the start of this year, National Spot is flat in Q1 compared to the same period last year, based on current Katz Radio Group pacing data. There’s been some negative effect on business in the quarter caused by major weather disruptions in major media markets and January revenue finished lower than last year.

Katz says it is seeing increased momentum in February and March with pricing higher measured by Average Minute Rates, along with a surging auto category, measured by pacings against Q1 of last year.

Automotive was up 27.4%, but Q1 is really impressive–pacing up 73.4%. Telecomm was up 21.3% last year. However, for Q1, Entertainment, retail and telecomm are off to a slower start, partly because of later placement and shifting dollars from national to local. 




Total Year

Q1 2011














Consumer Products






Prof. Services




Leading Q1 2011 Advertisers



O’Reilly Auto Parts, Honda, American Auto Association, Dodge, Jeep, Chrysler

Consumer Products

Pfizer, Panera Bread, Epson America, Boar’s Head, Avon, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chief Commercial Claims, Green Mountain Coffee, Eastman Kodak, Palmer’s Skin Care


Fox Broadcasting, Sony Pictures, USA Network, Buena Vista Pictures, Half Price Books, NBC, Universal Pictures, History Channel, E! Entertainment TV


GEICO, United Services Auto Assoc., American Family Insurance, PNC Bank, Allstate Insurance, American Express, Capital One, American Equity Mortgage, Esurance, Suntrust Banks

Professional Services

Susan G Komen for the Cure, H&R Block, LA Fitness, Portfolio Media Management, LCA Vision, Cedars-Sinai Medical, Lasik Eye Surgery, 24-hour Fitness


Safeway Stores, Wal*Mart, SuperValu, Great Clips, Select Comfort, Macy’s, Target, Home Depot, Office Depot, Mattress Firm


Verizon, Comcast, Tracfone, Cricket Communications, US Cellular, Frontier Communications


Pacing By Market Groupings
National Spot Radio’s 2010 recovery reached markets of all sizes, with every segment up double digits. In Q1 of this year, many of the individual markets throughout the country are showing growth; however, some of the larger markets have been negatively impacted by a soft January. Markets 76-100 showed the strongest growth, up some 14.8%. Moving forward, the good news is that February and March are pacing ahead in all segments.

Segment By Market Ranking
2010 Total Year; Q1 2011 Pacing 
1-10     +14.6%     -7.2%
11-25   +19.4%     -1.4%
26-50   +14.7%     +1.9%
51-75   +18.2%     +7.9%
76-100  +12.8%    +14.8%
100+    +23.2%     +7.7%

Pacing By Region

Katz is reporting strong gains across all regions of the country last year, with the Southeast taking the top spot, sporting a 20.3% gain. That was followed closely by double-digit growth in the South Central, North Central and Northeast regions. Similar to the segment performance, 2011’s Q1 pacing by region is all over the map, as the North Central, Southeast and South Central are showing gains while other regions trail last year.


By Region

2010 Total Year

Q1 2011 Pacing

North Central






South Central









Katz is seeing Average Minute Rates continue to grow at the start of the year, with a 1.2% Q1 gain as measured by pacings vs. the same period last year. Momentum is accelerating with each month, with February pacing up 5.8%, and March pacing ahead 10.1%.