Hi there, curiousguy1-ga
First, the following text by Gaebler provides an overview of the TV
"The standard half-hour of television contains 22 minutes of program
and 8 minutes of commercials - 6 minutes for national advertising and
2 minutes for local. National advertising is obviously your most
expensive option, but even then the rates vary by Nielsen-rated
viewership. Highly-watched programs can command rates in the millions
of dollars. For example, a 30-second spot during the 2005 Superbowl
sold for $2.4 million. Commercials during less-watched programs are
more affordable, but the cost of those commercials may still run in
excess of $100,000 per 30-seconds.
Most small- to medium-sized business owners find that local
advertising fits better with their budgets and marketing goals. A
30-second time slot in a medium-sized market can be purchased for as
little as $5 per 1,000 viewers, meaning that you could easily expect
to pay less than $100 per commercial slot. Even cheaper rates may be
available for off-hour programming."
TV advertising rates are typically quoted per 30-second commercial and
thus as you suspected, a longer commercial will cost more (ie 60
second commercial is double unless otherwise discount is otherwise
negotiated). For example, 30-second commercial for the popular show,
American Idol, cost $705,000 while the superbowl cost $2.5M. For more
prices (recent and historic) on major shows/events, please take a look
at the following link:
Local ads are also quoted per commercial as you can see on the Horizon
Television website (http://www.horizontel.com/tv/advertise.html) and
Glasgow EPB Cable TV (http://www.glasgow-ky.com/ADRATES/INDEX.HTM).
As you can see on these sites, the prices depend significantly on the
hour in which you run your commercial in, which is directly correlated
to the number of viewers. Of course, the number of viewers and their
TV viewing patterns will vary from region to region and thus, the
local rates will differ significantly from each other.
The standard price will get your commercial shown at any random time
within the specified period range and a small premium will allow you
to choose any specific program on any network, as long as it's not a
special event such as a major sports game (there's no distinction
between advertising on TV shows vs TV movies).
In terms of cost per thousand, the Myers Report, quoted by the NY
Times, indicates that prime time TV advertising sells for $17 per
thousand audience members.
The follow article on BusinessWeek indicates that the average rate for
a TV commercial is $20 per thousand viewers.
The following paper indicates that the average rate for TV advertising
in the UK is 8 pounds per thousand viewers (prices shown from 1961 to
This is a fascinating and well written research paper that uses
econometric modelling techniques to analyze and build economic models
for the UK TV advertising market (including market elasticities,
illustrative forecasts, etc)
Though the cost per thousand impressions is more complicated, the
individual cost per thousand households for the major shows can be
calculated by using the cost per 30-second commercial from the link
(http://medialit.med.sc.edu/2005-2006_ad_rates.htm) and the stats from
Yahoo! TV (http://tv.yahoo.com/nielsen/).
For example, CSI: Miami, the cost for the commercial is $465,000 and
14.333M households viewed the show so the cost per thousand households
is $465,000 / (14.333M / 1000) = $32.44
I hope this has helped and please feel free to ask for any clarification.