Media Outlook 2002

 Syndication

Howard Levy
Buena Vista

The Benefits Of Syndication

Despite unprecedented growth and ratings success of key syndicated vehicles, some advertisers are walking away from syndication. This simply doesn't make sense. Syndication is not only competitive with both network and cable television, in many cases, it surpasses its counterparts. As advertisers evaluate outlets for their all-too-limited dollars, it's essential for those of us in syndication to better define the medium and its potential value.

Education is the first step. Following in cable's footsteps, the Syndicated Network Television Association has launched an industry-wide effort to communicate the benefits of syndication. Newly appointed SNTA chairman and 30-year industry veteran Gene DeWitt will meet with the advertising community as part of the education process – an essential complement to each vendor's individual pitches. Until now, that's how syndication was sold on an individual basis. Meanwhile, the CAB (Cable Advertising Bureau) ensured widespread understanding of the burgeoning cable industry. Its ability to promote itself has resulted in the ongoing commitment from advertisers. As a result, many advertisers overlook syndicated daytime hits like 'Rosie' and 'Live with Regis and Kelly', yet plan for daytime cable where the number one show last season across 43 measured cable networks was 'Little House on the Prairie' a show that went off network in 1983 and was earning a 0.6 rating among women 18 to 49 on lBS.