TV’s decline follows heady days of Mad Men
Not that we needed any more evidence that those days are gone, but research firm Yankee Group reported this week that the U.S. ad market will decline by more than $1.6 billion in 2009.
The steep drop-off is due to an oversupply of media, which Boston-based Yankee Group details as an average of 119 TV channels to choose from. Those programmers are competing with a “trillion internet links and more than a million mobile Web sites,” according to the company.
That oversupply is also driving a $2 billion decline in TV advertising alone this year, per the Yankee Group.
The company notes that “the market power of television is being eroded by dramatic growth in IP networks and their corresponding capacity to carry advertising.”
Indeed, the company forecasts there will be more than 477 million wired broadband users by the end of 2009, a jump of more than 50 million since 2008.
Ironically “Mad Men” itself is a victim of increasingly fragmented TV audiences. The show’s season 3 premiere on Sunday drew a record live audience of 2.8 million viewers. And although that number is a 33 percent increase over last year’s season premiere, it’s still a viewership that’s less than half of other original cable series. For example, TNT’s “The Closer” averages about 7 million viewers per episode, according to Forbes.com.
Even Utz potato chips, a popular snack brand during the 1960s that still exists today, relies on clever product placements in “Mad Men” rather paying for pricey TV campaigns.
For veteran ad men nostalgic about the good old days when it was easier to get the attention of consumers and cocktails were thrown back at the office to celebrate a new business win, there’s always “Mad Men.”