Television Increasing Its Share of Ad Dollars

Jan 12, 2012

Television’s share of American advertising dollars is expected to have grown this year by about one-and-a-half percentage points over last year.

How can that be, you ask. What about the enormous growth in the Internet, the explosion of social media advertising?

The splintering of advertising media has been like a fragmentation grenade. Media segments. Then the segments segment. And it’s this very splintering that each year makes television more valuable to advertisers. Because television remains the one medium that still can deliver a big audience.

It’s why, in a recession, Super Bowl commercials, Oscar night, all the TV blockbusters -- continue to sell out at higher prices. There simply is no other place an advertiser can put  money to reach such a huge audience at one time. And the spill-over from the blockbusters has a big impact on all television inventory and pricing. It’s why TV sucks up political advertising money. And with next year being an election Year, TV will be dear.

With more and more fragmentation every year each medium, new and old, fights for advertising share. Until something else delivers the size audiences that TV still can, TV will continue to be the share leader, and its market share may continue to grow, even though the TV audience continues to shrink each year.


John Malmo is a marketing consultant who concentrates on helping business owners grow their businesses with effective marketing. To reach Mr. Malmo, hear and read more of his commentaries, or to ask him your own marketing question, go to