World Cup Fuels Spend on Spanish-Language Media

Marketers Up Outlays in Hispanic-Targeted Outlets More Than 20% in 1st Half

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The world cup scored for Spanish-language media, as ad spending skyrocketed more than 20% in the first half of 2006, according to both TNS Media Intelligence and Nielsen Monitor-Plus figures. Both companies attribute the surge to this year's tournament.

And according to TNS, ad outlays on Spanish-language TV, magazines and newspapers jumped 20.5%, or $409 million, over the first half of last year to a total of $2.4 billion. "Spanish-language media was the fastest-growing media in the first half of 2006 [excluding FSIs]," said Steven Fredericks, president-CEO of TNS Media Intelligence.

It's also a big jump compared to last year's growth rate for Spanish-language media of just 2.8% for the first half of 2005 over 2004, according to TNS figures. "There has been some fickleness on the part of advertisers with respect to their continued devotion and dedication to Spanish-language media," said Jon Swallen, senior VP-director of research at TNS Media Intelligence.

But one of the challenges of measuring the Hispanic market is that not all media researchers' figures agree. Nielsen, which only provided figures only for TV, reported that spending on Spanish-language TV rose 21.8%, or $270 million, to $1.5 billion in the first half. But the increase doesn't seem quite so extreme when compared with previous Nielsen estimates that showed spending on Spanish-language TV increased 15% in 2005 over the first half of 2004.

Mr. Fredericks of TNS said spending on Spanish-language network and cable TV was up 23.9% in the first half of 2006, heavily driven by World Cup packages. They were sold to advertisers by Univision, which broadcast all the World Cup games in June and July in addition to heavy pre-World Cup soccer coverage.

"The impact of World Cup is distributed across the entire broadcast season dating all the way back to last September," Mr. Swallen said. Since September 2005, TNS has seen double-digit percent gains each month compared to the same months the previous year, he said.

The premium that marketers put on the World Cup-and on the Hispanic market-is clear. General Motors Corp., for instance, boosted spending on Spanish-language TV 24.2% during the first half of 2006 and became the second-largest advertiser in the Hispanic market (trailing only Procter & Gamble Co.). But GM cut total ad outlays 3% for the same period, according to Nielsen figures.
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