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Viewer Loyalty to Local News Makes It Best Platform for Online Video Ads

Feb 28, 2008  •  Post A Comment

Local TV news is the most effective video platform for advertisers, according to a new survey.
The survey of more than 2,700 local news viewers between the ages of 25 and 54 showed them to be more engaged with local news than with other types of programming. It also showed them to be more likely to watch local news live rather than recording it and skipping through the ads, and to be more loyal to local TV news and more aware of the ads within it.
Highlights of the research, conducted for Hearst-Argyle by Frank N. Magid Associates, were discussed by Hearst-Argyle President-CEO David Barrett at the annual Association of National Advertisers conference Thursday at New York City’s Marriott Marquis hotel. The full survey results will be released in March.
In the survey, 55% of respondents said TV is their primary source of news information. The Internet was a distant second, with 26%, followed by print newspapers with 14%.
According to the research, after search engines, local TV news Web sites are most frequently used for local news and weather; and Web video viewing is higher for local TV news content than for any other genre: 37% for local news vs. 31% each for cable news and prime-time programming, 24% for reality TV video and 23% for broadcast network news.
Mr. Barrett said that despite the survey’s findings on the upside of advertising on TV-centric Web sites, ad spending generally lags traffic on the sites. While a report from Borrell Associates estimated that 43.7% of the $8.5 billion spent on local Web advertising in 2007 went to Google, 33.4% went to newspaper Web sites and only 9.3% was spent on local broadcast TV Web sites.
Mr. Barrett said Hearst-Argyle’s Web sites in 2007 tallied more than 1.7 billion page views from an average of nearly 15 million monthly unique visitors, according to WebTrends data.
“These findings indicate marketers can seize an advantage and use new digital technologies such as broadband and DTV spectrum to geo- and micro-target their messages,” Mr. Barrett said, “and they can do it with video content providers who have exceedingly strong, trusted on-air, online and mobile content brands in key local markets.”

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