Oscar ads are no Super Bowl, but still pricey

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NEW YORK — The Academy Awards are not only a big spectacle for the Hollywood crowd, but also for Madison Avenue folks. According to a new report from research firm TNS Media Intelligence, annual advertising during the Oscar broadcast has more than doubled during the past 12 years to more than $80 million in 2006, but the ad field is less cluttered than during other big events, making it ‘‘one of the premier television events for advertisers.’’ ...

The cost for a 30-second ad spot also has been on the rise since 1995, when marketers had to shell out $700,000 on average and overall Academy ad spending was $30.1 million, TNS said.
Last year, the figures climbed to nearly $1.65 million and $80.7 million, respectively, the firm’s data shows. That means total ad revenue is up 168 percent since 1995 and 28 percent alone during the past five years of available data.

That is despite ratings that have been up and down in recent years. Last year’s telecast, hosted by Jon Stewart, averaged 38.8 million viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research. That was lower than the Chris Rock-hosted 2005 Academy Awards that averaged 41.5 million but not as low as the 33 million for the March 2003 Oscars. But what attracts advertisers is not just the raw number — the Academy Awards still are a lot of viewers — but also the upscale ratings among viewers with incomes of more than $100,000.

The top five Academy Awards advertisers during the 12-year period are big blue chip firms — General Motors Corp., American Express Co., PepsiCo Inc., JCPenney Co. and McDonald’s, TNS data shows. These top five invested more than $310 million in Academy Awards advertising between 1995-2006, accounting for 47 percent of total network ad spending on the show, TNS found.

The Hollywood Reporter

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This page contains a single entry by Thomas Conner published on February 20, 2007 5:59 PM.

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