Stream ad sales received an Olympic boost in February: SMI

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According to the latest figures from the Standard Media Index, TV ad sales rose 15% in February as NBC aired Winter Olympics coverage from Beijing.

February was also a big month for TV networks in terms of digital video sales, which were up 83%. Part of that was probably Olympic dollars that feathered NBCU’s Peacock’s Nest. Peacock was home-based for NBCU’s Olympic programming.

Overall, major media companies that own TV networks are trying harder to reach viewers through their digital and streaming platforms as traditional TV ratings decline.

Network digital sales accounted for 5% of all media spend in February. This compares to broadcast’s share of 17% and cable TV’s share of 15%, per SMI.

Cable TV ad spend was down 7% in February and syndication was down 16%.

In a non-election year, spot TV was down 3%, and local TV and cable were down 1%.

Advertising sales involving third parties, including media targeting, barter and ad technology companies, and representation companies, increased 17%.

Total linear TV was up 2% year over year in February.

In addition to TV channel sales, digital was strong, with pure-play video equipment (including YouTube and Hulu) up 32%. Spending through ad networks and ad exchanges also increased, up 19%.

Total digital grew 25% during the month, accounting for 54% of all ad spend.

SMI’s data is sourced from bills from major, independent agencies and is geared toward nationally advertised brands. ■


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