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How does Television Advertising Work?

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Since the advent of the internet there have been widespread forecasts predicting the demise of television advertising. The expected dramatic decline is yet to occur, and today television remains the most effective way of creating widespread awareness.

Over 90% of consumers watch commercial television each week, with the average adult spending 26 hours each week watching TV.

Only 0.5% of people never watch television, which compares very favourably to the research showing that 44% of people never listen to commercial radio and 76% never read regional newspapers.

Is TV advertising still effective?

Television advertising does still work for many businesses. On average, over the first 28 days of advertising on TV brands can expect a 5% sales increase. Many satellite channels that have highly targeted audiences and smaller businesses advertising can record significantly higher figures.

Although consumers are feeling more distant towards traditional forms of advertising, 43% of adults still say that they are most likely to respond to a TV advertisement, compared to 13% for radio and newspaper ads.

Isn’t this form of advertising exclusively for large brands?

Many businesses still feel that TV advertising will be too expensive for them, something that is often not the case. The growth of digital TV means that many people now have a choice of hundreds of channels, with many of these channels highly focused on a specific topic, thereby offering highly targeted audiences for potential advertisers.

At one time you would have needed a £1 million advertising budget and a further £100,000 for the production of the commercial before you could consider running a TV advertising campaign. However, today with a budget of just £10,000 an advertising solution can be found.

With the range of digital channels available and the growing phenomenon of interactive TV – over 8 million people have now interacted with their televisions – a range of advertising options on TV are available. These include straightforward advertising, sponsorship, interactive competitions, and product placement will also soon become possible.

How does the process work?

To advertise on TV it’s best to hire an agency. Agencies have experience in dealing with all types of campaigns and can offer invaluable advice before proceeding. In addition, agencies negotiate with contractors, plan your campaign with your target audience in mind, monitor ratings, and help track the results. They also tend to advise on who to recruit to produce the commercial.

In an attempt to get a better price dealing direct with TV contractors can seem like a good idea but in practice you’d be leaving yourself open to be exploited. The advice and knowledge of an experienced agency is invaluable.

How well can TV advertisements be targeted?

One of the real advantages of TV advertising is that audience demographics can be reliably measured, whether that’s the age, gender, status or interests of viewers. Geographical targeting is also possible.

Agencies will analyse past data and develop an ad buying strategy that reaches your target audience at the lowest possible cost.

How are television ratings worked out?

TV advertising agencies tend to deal with ‘TV Ratings’ or ‘TVRs’, which means that they can guarantee that a certain percentage of your available target audience will see your commercial. These figures are obtained from BARB, the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board.

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