Total ad spend grows 1.5 percent during first nine months of 2011, says Kantar Media

Total advertising expenditures in the first nine months of 2011 increased 1.5 percent from a year ago and finished the period at $104.7 billion, according to data released Dec. 19 from Kantar Media.

Most types of television advertising saw spending gains as well. Expenditures on cable networks increased 6.5 percent during the third quarter. That compares to what Jon Swallen, SVP Research at Kantar Media North America, described as "a barely palpable +0.4 percent" growth in ad expenditures overall. For the January through September period, outlays on cable TV rose 9.9 percent.

Network TV registered its first quarterly gain of the year as third quarter expenditures grew 0.2 percent on higher budgets from movie studios and consumer package goods marketers, the Kantar Media tally shows.

Year-to-date expenditures were down 5.7 percent, primarily from the loss of marquee college football and basketball programming that moved to cable networks in the first quarter of 2011, it said.

Spanish Language Television advertising soared 18 percent during the third quarter, and Syndication TV was up 14.8 percent in the period. The only TV segment to lose ground was Spot TV, where expenditures sank 5.7 percent during July through September, Kantar Media said. For the January through September period, they were down 2.7 percent.

Referring to ad expenditures for all media, Swallen said that "the cautious optimism" present at the beginning of 2011 "has been replaced by the statistical evidence of progressively slowing growth rates."