Media Buying and Inbound Marketing Blog

Sports Programming Dominates TV Spending

By Jane Peters on September 11, 2015 |


If you are using traditional media as part of your marketing strategy, you know the continued fragmentation and loss of viewers is making it harder to have an effective TV campaign.  Media buying isn't as easy as it used to be when your TV spending was divided amongst a few of the major networks. 

We've seen significant ratings losses in cable and traditional TV networks across the board. National football-931378-editedcable network ratings tumbled 9 percent in 2014, triple the decline seen in 2013 and more than quadruple the 2 percent decline seen in 2012.  Bad news for cable is that the trend is continuing in 2015.

Luckily the bright spot on the landscape is sports programming. Sports is the only segment that guarantees big ratings with it's very large reach and live-audience delivery.

Beer, cars and insurance are the biggest spenders in the category with Chevy outspending everyone.

According to Kantar Media, sports programming in 2014-15 generated $8.47 billion in sales for ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox, accounting for more than one-third (37%) of the Big Four's overall ad revenue for the period. 

CBS gets the biggest share of sports spending, followed by Fox then NBC in third place.


ABC is the only network that does not air NFL games but their revenue combined with ESPN, who handles sports sales for its broadcast sibling, wins the category of most ad dollars. (Sports programming now accounts for 62% of Fox's overall sales volume.)

NFL games accounted for 45 of last season's 50 most-watched broadcasts, and 24 of those contests were held outside of the prime-time window.

While sports programming is grabbing all the ad spending, it may not be for everyone.  Live sports, while delivering the ratings, also comes with a big price tag.  Small and medium size businesses often can't afford the cost of airing during Sunday football or the Super Bowl.  So what media strategy do you adopt?

At Media Management Services we provide clients with all the tools needed to compete in today's competitive marketplace. What we do is get you found, generate leads and build your connections to customers and prospects across multiple platforms. We can deliver a consistent message that translates well for your digital and your traditional media platforms.

We explore ways to reach consumers by considering all aspects of traditional and emerging media usage. By providing a more focused and targeted media campaign, we help you reach potential customers in today's cluttered environment. We develop an individualized media plan that will meet or exceed your marketing goals and stay within defined budgets.  If you would like to learn more, give us a call.

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