26 May 2000

Media auditing specialist The Billett Consultancy is advising TV advertisers to shift spend away from ITV as a result of continued airtime price inflation.

In a new report Billett claims that a Channel 5 adult rating is now more than 40% cheaper than one on ITV. It also attacks ITV schedules as containing “little to suggest that audiences will be flocking to the channel in the near future”.

London, says Billett, is an area of particularly high ITV inflation: whereas adult prices nationally rose 16% per cent year-on-year, they have soared by 21% in London - with even greater variance for ABC1 viewers. A spate of dotcom advertisers, mainly focused on the capital, had contributed significantly to the price disparity.

Responds Carlton Television chief executive Martin Bowley: “John Billett is advising advertisers to take their spot out of the centre break of a forthcoming England match in Euro 2000 and spread it as thinly as possible on minority channels."

He was backed by David Cuff, broadcast director of Initiative Media who said: “The market determines the price. The [Billett] report is recommending too general an approach. Whether or not you advertise on ITV is decided by your communications objectives. But the advice is useful for lazy buyers who are failing to offer a bespoke service."

News Source: CampaignLive (UK)