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TV Advertising Costs

We don't just buy TV - we buy TV that gets results

Perhaps you’ve arrived here because you’re considering using TV advertising for the first time? Or maybe you currently use TV to advertise your business, but need a little help with an idea of costing and how best to plan your budget? TV advertising can seem both confusing and expensive.

The TV Agency can help. Whether you’re a small brand, a new business or an established company, we can talk you through your options and get you up and running. Let’s take a look at the costing example below as a starting point. It covers regional costs on ITV and some National Digital channels. It’s followed by a few suggestions to consider when budgeting and best of all, a quick look at how a TV advert can actually cost you NOTHING!

These are example TV advertising costs for different ITV1 regions. These examples look at a 30-second premium spot in Coronation Street for adults and a daytime advert in This Morning. Both examples target adults, but the spot in This Morning comes with a daytime discount whereas Coronation Street comes at a premium. These costs are for information purposes only and does not constitute an offer capable of acceptance.

These are example TV advertising costs for different ITV1 regions. These examples look at a 30-second premium spot in Coronation Street for adults and a daytime advert in This Morning. Both examples target adults, but the spot in This Morning comes with a daytime discount whereas Coronation Street comes at a premium. These costs are for information purposes only and does not constitute an offer capable of acceptance.

ITV1 Region Cost for Coronation Street peak spot avg ratings plus premium Costs For This Morning daytime spot avg ratings with daytime discount Cost for a week of TV advertising with natural dayparts ( avg of 5-6 peak spots and 10 – 12 off peak)
Tyne Tees £1,770 £162 £7,142
Yorkshire £4,023 £369 £16,232
Yorkshire Emily £2,584 £237 £10,425
Yorkshire Belmont £1,439 £132 £5,804
Granada £5,649 £518 £22,793
Border £377 £35 £1,523
Central West £6,213 £590 £30,081
Central East £2,654 £252 £12,849
Wales £1,884 £179 £9,121
HTV West £1,418 £135 £6,868
West Country £1,047 £99 £5,068
Anglia East £1,903 £180 £10,240
Anglia West £2,006 £189 £10,793
Meridian Hampshire £2,897 £274 £15,587
Meridian Thames Valley £2,054 £194 £11,051
Meridian South East £1,938 £183 £10,427
London (Carlton/LWT) £11,008 £1,032 £66,620
STV Edinburgh £1,120 £93 £4,517
STV Glasgow £2,333 £194 £9,415
STV Aberdeen £801 £67 £3,234
STV Dundee £394 £33 £1,589
UTV £1,102 £92 £4,445

So that's great for ITV1, but what about national digital channels? TV advertising costs below for a national campaign across some sample SKY channels in daytime only. Planning out a peak campaign can be more complicated as there are various different audiences that can be bought but these daytime example costs give you an idea of how affordable TV really is, even at a national level. TV advertising costs are based on how many viewers see your advert. Because of this, the cost between channels varies greatly as the average number of viewers on a small channel such as VH1 is going to be very different to a more popular channel such as Sky Living, therefore, the cost varies greatly. Normally with a daytime campaign, you would choose your channels based on your target audience and then calculate the cost depending upon how many viewers you wanted to reach. These costs are based on a 60-second advert since there is a lot of research to support that a 60-second commercial is more effective in daytime direct response advertising. A 30” advert would be half the cost!


Channel Daytime rate for Adults, against AVG ratings, cost per 60" advert Cost for 2 adverts per day, over 4 weeks Monday to Friday, based on AVG ratings, 40 TV ads
SKY Living £100 £4,000
CBS Action £167 £6,680
DMAX £10 £400
SKY News £404 £16,160
SKY Football £57 £2,280
Discovery Shed £13 £520
Food Network £133 £5,320
Discovery Turbo £27 £1,080
National Geographic Wild £13 £520
VH1 £3 £120

DID YOU KNOW, A TV ADVERT CAN COST NOTHING?


Too good to be true? Let us explain. Once your advert is up and running, and buying a ratings campaign you only pay for how many viewers watch your advert. By placing your advert on a smaller digital channel, the slot can be likely to register a zero viewing figure, meaning less than 1,000 viewers have seen it.


ZERO VIEWING FIGURE = ZERO COST!


Don’t panic! It doesn’t mean no one is watching, it means people are watching, but the audience is too small to register. Using this spot will cost you nothing, but if it generates a trackable response, such as a call or web visit, then what an excellent rate of return! We can supply costs across all channels such as ITV, SKY, Channel 4 and Five etc, but costing isn’t as simple with digital channels. This is mainly because you would normally run a combination of channels for an effective campaign, whereas ITV1 delivers much higher viewing figures and can be bought across micro-regions to deliver a high impact in small areas. Viewing figures are smaller across digital channels and you can only advertise nationally, meaning low impact, UK coverage that requires a longer campaign. This can be very effective for campaigns where cost per response is very important.

Need info on TV advert production costs? TVA Production, part of The TV Agency can help! Click for example costs!


Because TV advertising costs are based on a number of factors (each of which we have aimed to explain as comprehensively as possible below) it’s worth understanding how each affects your budget and plans. If you already know the ins and outs of TV advertising and would like to book a call, scroll down and click the link at the bottom of this page.

Here are the factors you need to be aware of when planning your advertising campaign spend:

The number of Viewers or TVRs (television ratings) – Viewers are your buying audience and usually categorised according to age and gender. Your number of viewers is usually expressed as a percentage of the potential audience who will see your advert. For Example, a slot during Coronation Street, aired on ITV Tyne Tees, might deliver 10 adult TVR’s. The potential audience in the Tyne Tees Region is 2.4 million. Therefore, 10% of 2,4 million would equate to 240,000 adults who watched your advert.

CPT, or Cost Per Thousand – This figure denotes the cost to reach 1,000 viewers in your selected region for the month in which you advertise. It can vary depending upon certain factors such as supply and demand, seasonal fluctuations and how difficult it may be to reach a certain demographic. There are some broadcasters who will offer a fixed CPT figure in some instances.

Deals – Is there always a deal to be done? Well, it’s largely how you buy your advertising which determines whether a discount, may be negotiated. A glance at the costings table above shows that, unsurprisingly, there is a premium charge to place an ad during peak time for specific premium programmes. Often the largest discounts are gained by placement during daytime only slots.

Potential viewers –The total buying audience available, in the region you plan to buy advertising space in. You may also hear this called the ‘universe’. For example, the Tyne Tees Adult Universe has an audience of 2.4 million. There may be an average of 10 TVR’s per peak spot. Therefore, 10% of that figure, 240,000 would see your advert.

Time length – You will need to consider the length of your advert. TV adverts tend to run for about 30 seconds, but some run for less should there be a creative need for it. It has been discovered that the first 10 seconds of a TV advert is the most powerful in terms of impact. With this in mind, the cost difference between a 30” and 10” is not a third, in fact, a 10” ad will cost 60% of the price of a 30”.

If you’re ready to take things up a notch, get in touch.


Time-wise, we usually work 1- 2 months in advance of planned transmission date. Of course, should you have your ad ready to go, we can aim to grab you a last-minute campaign, which may attract a late charge broadcaster’s fee. We can supply costings across all channels. Don’t forget, we continually monitor your advert as part of our service. We want you to get the highest possible rate of return on your investment and our weekly data reports will help track the delivery of your campaign. And if you need an advert made again we can help through TVA production which is a part of The TV Agency. So there, in a nutshell, is an at-a-glance guide to TV Costings.

Start by calling us. We are ready and waiting to launch your TV advertising. You can also find more useful information on the three largest broadcasters here, itvmedia.co.uk, 4sales.com, skymedia.co.uk

And for leading research on TV advertising visit thinkbox.tv

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