A major media agency CEO confirms what the television and cable market is starting to hear—advertisers are pulling back on upfront commitments and Q2 option taking is bigger than many had thought. Cuts are being made across the board—network, broadcast, cable, you name it.
Said the CEO: “Can anyone be surprised? The market was in for a correction and here it is. It will be the first favorable scatter market in almost a decade. The media market is changing before our eyes.”
Indeed, the dynamic is changing, just like radio. Advertisers, knowing inventory will be available, are focusing more and more on scatter—this trend has been increasing in radio for years.
RBR/TVBR observation: This looks like a bit of a strategy. Certainly, major advertisers are gambling that they can drop out of some of the upfront deals at the rates they bought last Spring and get back in at lower rates for scatter. Sure, it has been done for years, but this year will be much more because the gamble is much safer.
Radio should remember, though: there’s television ad money out there right now in flux that’s looking for cheaper alternatives. Yes, much of these budgets may be cut permanently, but not all. So this is a good time to call upon some of these national advertisers and show the power of radio—more bang for less buck.