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Online Ad Spending Drops

The Internet was the worst performing sector in the media business for the first three quarters of 2002, according to the latest report from CMR, with online ad expenditures dropping 18 percent versus the same time a year ago.

CMR, the New York-based company that tracks ad spending in major media, reported that Internet ad revenues were $3.8 billion for the first nine months of the year, down from $4.6 billion a year earlier.

Total ad spending for January through September came in at $84.4 billion, up 2.2 percent from $82.6 billion in 2001. CMR attributed the overall growth to the elections, strong upfront sales and a rebound from the Sept. 11 tragedy.

All media categories outpaced the Internet, in terms of spending growth during the first nine months. Spanish-language TV and spot TV recorded the greatest gains as ad spending in those categories rose nearly 26 percent and 15 percent, respectively. Other media categories that reported boosts in ad expenditures included Sunday magazines (10 percent), local radio (10 percent), newspapers (8 percent), network TV (7 percent) and national spot radio (6 percent).

In addition to the Internet, ad spending declined in b-2-b magazines (-17 percent), syndication-national (-12 percent), outdoor (-4 percent), consumer magazines (-1 percent), cable TV (-1 percent) and national newspapers (-3 percent).

CMR predicted that overall ad spending will grow 2.5 percent for 2002. "This is due to the additional ad dollars that were spent in November to support the final election push and the upcoming holiday season," said George Shababb, senior vice president CMR/TNS Media Intelligence.


Ann M. Mack, Adweek.com. November 18, 2002

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