Magazine article Marketing

A Small Glimmer of Hope for ITV as Advertisers Detect Bargains: Greg Dyke Was Right to Warn That the Boom in TV Football Rights Could Be over. (Opinion)

Magazine article Marketing

A Small Glimmer of Hope for ITV as Advertisers Detect Bargains: Greg Dyke Was Right to Warn That the Boom in TV Football Rights Could Be over. (Opinion)

Article excerpt

It is possible if you look very carefully to find a tiny crumb of comfort for ITV. The collapse of advertising revenues has not got worse than previously expected; indeed if you pick up a really powerful telescope it is just possible to discern a little extra money moving into ITV's coffers.

Maybe a few advertisers are starting to get the message that the cost of buying ITV is now running at 1994 levels and deciding it might be a good idea to spend. After years of complaining about extortionate media inflation, surely that's the least they can do.

The sums involved are not exciting, but the latest numbers for ITV show a mere 17.8% drop in November to [pound]159m and an estimated fall of 25.9% for December instead of a collapse of more than 30%. Overall for the year, ITV looks like being down by 15.4% as opposed to 16% ,with Channel 4 coming in with a 6.3% drop.

Where total share is concerned, ITV is not doing too badly. The channel's [pounds sterling]1.66bn revenue for the year amounts to a 56.8% share of total television advertising. This is only marginally down on recent years -- something that will greatly distress Carlton and Granada.

ITV's share of advertising is still far too high for the Competition Commission to allow the creation of a single ITV. The slight sense of a stabilisation of sorts may provide a sounder base for next year.

Elsewhere, panic still rules supreme. If you believe what you read, then there is a race on between ITV Digital and ITV Sport to see which one can be closed down quicker. …

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