ITV advertising revenue share slips below 50 per cent

ITV’s share of television advertising revenue fell below the important 50 per cent mark in 2004 and is expected to fall even further, to 47 per cent, in 2005, according to Billetts Media Consulting.

ITV’s share fell from 51 per cent to 49 per cent during the past year, claims Billetts in its UK Media Forecasts 2005 document. The broadcaster’s share of adult impacts also fell, from 43 per cent to 40 per cent, putting pressure on trading negotiations for 2005.

Billetts forecasts that commercial TV revenue as a whole will grow by four per cent in 2005 and that commercial audiences will be up three per cent, fuelled by multi-channel penetration. Channel 4 and IDS are expected to be the main beneficiaries of revenue growth.

Although TV advertisers will be faced with minimal inflation, of one per cent, Billetts recommends that they think about advertising cut-through and the effects of personal video recorders. Areas where advertisers are expected to increase their spend include telecoms, with the arrival of third-generation mobile services, and finance, as equity markets recover. The Government is expected to spend more in the run-up to the General Election.

In the national press, revenue growth was driven by demand for colour in 2004, but mono volumes were at a five-year low. Billetts forecasts an increase in total revenue of two per cent in 2005, despite an expected fall in overall circulations of two per cent. This is set to result in cost-per-thousand inflation of four per cent.

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