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Survey finds local TV stations benefit from significant online ad growth

Local TV online advertising grew at an exponential rate last year and is expected to grow by up to 39 percent across all markets this year, according to a new Television Bureau survey.

The survey, "Benchmarking the Local Website Marketplace," was commissioned by TVB and conducted by Borrell Associates. It found that during 2005, local television stations increased their online ad share an average of two percentage points over the past 12 months. The survey revealed that several stations captured more than 15 percent of all locally spent online advertising in 2005 and that some station groups are now generating millions of dollars from Internet operations.

Among other findings, the survey reveals:

  • By year's end 2005, local broadcast stations had generated an estimated $283 million, twice as much as they did in 2004.
  • Many TV Web operations stepped up sales efforts, growing their online ad revenues an average of 46 percent.
  • More than 100 stations — many of them UPN, WB and Fox affiliates — started generating money from their Web sites for the first time in 2005.
  • In 2005, TV local Web revenues accounted for a 6 percent share of all locally spent online advertising, a gain of two points from 2004. The gain, though a relatively small portion of $3.9 billion, is still impressive.
  • The survey further projects local online advertising will grow 28 percent in 2006 across all local markets. Adding local paid search advertising to the equation, the growth climbs to 39 percent.

Borrell Associates solicits online advertising data from local Web site operators via e-mail and telephone year-round. Participation in this survey currently totals about 2300 individual Web sites.

For more information, visit www.tvb.org.

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