Articles of Interest

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Clear Channel capping ad minutes per hour on radio

In a surprise move likely to reverberate throughout the entire radio industry, Clear Channel is admitting to what media buyers have been complaining about for years: commercial overload, or ad clutter.
Definition: too many darn ads so that listeners tune out and advertisers feel hosed for paying for spots folks just aren't hearing.
Reacting to a slide in radio ad prices, the nation's largest radio company will cap the amount and length of commercials that air on its 1,200-plus stations.
The behemoth's aim: Reducing the overall number of available ad spots will drive up the price advertisers are willing to pay to have their messages air on Clear Channel stations.
Ideally, the reduced inventory will raise demand and thereby prices sufficiently to generate higher revenues overall. Or that's the bet.
Another bet is that Clear Channel's lead will be followed by other major radio groups contending with that same issue of falling prices in the faces of the bloated inventory that's arisen from radio's worsening clutter problem.
Under Clear Channel's new rules, which go into effect Jan. 1, no station will run more than 15 minutes of advertising per hour.
Additionally, no commercial break will last more than 4 minutes or contain more than six commercials.
Clear Channel stations will also reduce promotional inventory--ads promoting contests or upcoming segments--beginning Oct. 1.
The decision follows months of lower-than-expected growth in ad spending, in addition to endless complaints from advertisers regarding the glut of commercials on nearly every radio station.
Combined national and local ad spending rose only 4 percent during the first five months of the year, and only 2 percent in all of 2003, according to data from the Radio Advertising Bureau. Radio ad revenue was projected to climb this election year as demand spilled over from local TV because of politicals, with the effect of tightening the demand for radio time.
A recent study from J.P. Morgan found that some radio shows, particularly morning and afternoon news shows, air as much as 22 minutes of advertising an hour, notes a story in today's Wall Street Journal.
According to the study, radio overall averages 15 minutes of commercials per hour, as compared with 12.5 minutes for television. That’s compared with the 10 to 12 minutes of advertising considered the norm for radio a decade ago.
Accordingly, Clear Channel has seen its stock fall 25 percent since the beginning of this year.
By cutting back on ad clutter, Clear Channel hopes to halt listener flight to non-commercial music formats such as CD players and iPods.
It also hopes the ads that do air will have a greater impact on listening audiences, thereby increasing the value of commercial spots to advertisers.
The specific limits imposed on Clear Channel stations will depend on its format and the time of day.
For example, in the morning Clear Channel’s country music broadcasters will be allowed no more than 12 minutes of commercials an hour, with 4 minutes and six commercials allotted to each commercial break.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - Online Ad Dollars Set to Match, Then Go Ahead of Magazines' - Online Ad Dollars Set to Match, Then Go Ahead of Magazines'
Online Ad Dollars Set to Match,
Then Go Ahead of Magazines'

Forecast Cites Web's Skill
At Targeting an Audience;
Is Print Losing Its Appeal?
July 27, 2004; Page B7

Magazine publishers often set out to woo advertising dollars from television, but they might want to focus on a different sort of screen.

A new report from Jupitermedia's JupiterResearch predicts that dollars spent on online advertising -- defined as a paid message featured on a Web site, online service or other interactive medium, such as instant message or e-mail -- will match dollars spent on magazines by 2007, then surpass them in 2008.

In a sign of how the Internet is rebounding, Jupiter predicts that marketers will spend $8.4 billion on online advertising in 2004, while earmarking $12.2 billion for magazines. In 2007, the two platforms each will get $13.8 billion. In 2008, online ad spending surges ahead, capturing $15 billion, compared to magazines' $14.5 billion, Jupiter predicts. The gap widens in 2009. The Jupiter forecast is set to be released Wednesday.

Web offerings have become "more targeted and much smarter" about how they measure their audience, says Gary Stein, a Jupiter senior analyst. Driving the money, he says, is the burgeoning popularity of paid-search advertising, which allows marketers to link their names to very individual Web activity. Also important: The spread of high-speed broadband connections will spur more use of ads that are more like TV commercials, creatively using video and sound. Meanwhile, Internet display ads have shown new momentum this year. The report calls for usage minutes and ad dollars to cluster around four top properties: Yahoo, Google, Time Warner's AOL and Microsoft's MSN.

Of course, Jupiter has been a longtime supporter of the Internet -- and can get ahead of itself. In 1999, for example, Jupiter said it expected online advertising in 2003 to total $11.5 billion, but the economic downturn got in the way. According to the company's current report, 2003 online advertising came to $6.6 billion.

The report could certainly stoke the continuing debate about how attractive the print medium is to advertisers. While many publishers cautiously point to an expected rebound, ad pages for magazines -- general interest and Sunday magazines -- have been down for several years, according to statistics from Publishers Information Bureau. In 2003, ad pages were off 0.6%, compared with 2002. In 2002, pages fell 3.05%. In 2001, pages declined about 11.6%. In 2000, during better times, pages were up 9.8%. For the first six months of 2004, ad pages have increased 0.7%, according to PIB.

One forecast suggests consumer eyeballs are moving away from printed material. According to a study from Veronis Suhler Stevenson, the number of hours per year that consumers spend with print media has dropped steadily since 1997 and is expected to continue to decline through 2007.

Of course, most magazines have their own Internet presence, through which they can meld magazine content with online distribution. In April 2003, Time Warner's Time Inc. magazine unit elected to shut off free access to Web versions of several of its publications, and instead made the content available only to subscribers, recent newsstand buyers and members of the company's America Online service.

Media buyers and publishers aren't certain that online content is draining advertising dollars away from print. "Online is being added to plans, but it doesn't necessarily take away from the amount spent on other media," says Alex Tamayo of Media Contacts, part of Havas's MPG media-services firm. Consumers can use both media, one for quick information gathering and one for a more luxurious read, says Michael Clinton, executive vice president of Hearst's Hearst Magazines, which co-owns SmartMoney with Dow Jones, publisher of The Wall Street Journal and the Online Journal. "One does not preclude the other," he says.

Monday, July 26, 2004

MediaDailyNews 07-26-04

MediaDailyNews 07-26-04
This article takes a semi-deep dive into fantasy sports, but the main news is that ComScore now allows for more specific site/audience behavior analysis.

ComScore Media Metrix today reports that more than 7 million Americans visited the fantasy sports sections of Yahoo! Sports, SportsLine, and ESPN, and viewed an average of 200 pages of related content per month. The online audience measurement and analysis firm retrieved the findings using its new MediaBuilder tool.

iMedia Connection: How CPG Leaders Court Millennials

iMedia Connection: How CPG Leaders Court Millennials
It's all about understanding customers, not making them understand the company.
CHICAGO -- Procter & Gamble (P&G) executives at Ad:Tech here inspired an audience hungry for success stories by presenting several compelling interactive case studies and insight into their most effective targeting techniques.

The marketing behemoth is employing new ways of connecting with consumers by leveraging several of the Internet's inherent advantages: interactivity, targeting ability, better measurement and accountability.

..... link to read rest of story .....

iMedia Connection: Placement Really Does Matter [Search results]

iMedia Connection: Placement Really Does Matter
Search study shows a 10x difference in traffic between the first listing and the tenth.
At AD:TECH Chicago earlier this week, aQuantive, Inc.'s Atlas DMT released research demonstrating the impact of paid search listings rank on traffic and how marketers can better model and forecast paid search campaigns.

.... link to full article for more

Monday, July 19, 2004


Comcast and Cox talking to media agencies about on-demand paid services and measurement.


Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Shhh! How Paid Search Really Affects Traffic

Shhh! How Paid Search Really Affects Traffic
Atlas DMT report on relative traffic yield per search listing rank.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

iMedia Connection: How to Make Targeting Work

iMedia Connection: How to Make Targeting Work
Good starting point for brushing up on the basics as well as some of the latest regarding behavioral targeting. Bold headers below indicate actual page links to further info.

Find out what makes today's behavioral marketing techniques so effective -- and how you can use them.
Remember back in the early days of Internet marketing? When vendors promised one-to-one targeting based on personally identifiable information? It was a marketer's dream that quickly turned into a nightmare when privacy advocates stepped in.

Welcome it back, in the form of behavioral marketing -- the new generation of one-to-one targeting based on the online actions of consumers and their interests, rather than on who they are.

Learn about this effective targeting technique, how marketers are using it, and what vendors currently offer it:

Behavioral Targeting 101 Specialists explain what this functionality is and isn't about (first of two parts).

Behavioral Targeting 101 Part 2 What differentiates companies in this space (last of two parts).

Behavior vs. Context Understanding the difference can keep you from being unceremoniously dumped on the "no" pile.

Interpreting the Art of Behavioral Marketing Dave Morgan of Tacoda Systems discusses how to decipher behavioral data for maximum benefit.

Four Steps to Better Behavior MarketingAny marketer for any business can develop effective behavior-driven plans that grow the business. And online can deliver significant business impact.

Changing the Privacy Paradigm
Industry needs to teach users that behavioral targeting, if done right, can actually increase privacy.