World Media in 2005: Spain

Under the Socialist government of Zapatero, advertisers face shorter ad breaks in a market where airtime demand already outstrips supply. Other media may have to take up the slack.

Spain's image as a cheap and cheerful tourist destination is changing, thanks to competition from Eastern Europe and Asia. It is now repackaging itself as a more upmarket choice for the discerning holiday-maker, and the government has boosted its spend on travel and tourism advertising by more than one-third.

Prices increased in Spain when the euro replaced the peseta, but the economy has settled and is enjoying growth.

In 2004, the terrorist attack in Madrid on the eve of a general election helped secure a surprise victory for the Socialist candidate Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero. He immediately withdrew Spanish troops from Iraq and introduced a package of popular reforms. His main headache is the Basque separatist group, Eta, which continues to claim lives in its struggle for independence.

Zapatero's popularity may not extend as far as Spain's media community, however. He is committed to giving Spain's media more of a public-service ethos, which may mean fewer ad minutes on TV. Such a reduction in a market where demand already far outstrips supply could present a serious challenge to Spanish advertisers. Product placement and innovative new ways of using TV are already established in Spain and are likely to become more prominent.

Analogue switch-off is due in 2012, providing an opportunity for media owners that want to launch digital channels. Digital cable and satellite channels have been growing, although digital terrestrial services suffered a setback when Quiero closed in 2002.

The private terrestrial channels Antena 3 and Tele5 are on offer alongside Spain's public service broadcaster RTVE. Soap operas, sitcoms and reality shows attract healthy audiences. In 2004, TVE broadcast a royal wedding that broke all records for being the most popular TV broadcast in Spanish history: 25.1 million Spaniards - more than half the population - switched on for more than four-and-a-half hours.

In many ways, it's unsurprising that Spaniards were glued to their screens for the wedding: Spain is the home of glossy, celebrity coverage. Pronto sells almost a million copies a week while !Hola! - the original Hello! - shifts more than half a million. The market-leaders were last year joined on the newsstand by Diva from !Hola!'s publisher and Gala, from Gruner & Jahr.

El Pais and Marca, a sports daily, dominate the newspaper scene.


USdollars million at current prices. All years based on US$1=

euro 0.89 *Estimated

News- Mag-

Total papers azines TV Radio Cinema Outdoor Internet

1992 4,504 1,360 848 1,453 548 41 254 0

1993 4,307 1,347 763 1,402 518 41 236 0

1994 3,858 1,227 624 1,441 360 32 175 0

1995 3,997 1,259 633 1,500 390 33 181 0

1996 4,129 1,299 642 1,560 406 34 188 0

1997 4,388 1,373 673 1,679 425 36 201 0

1998 4,899 1,498 711 1,954 464 43 224 6

1999 5,768 1,727 762 2,370 526 48 318 17

2000 6,384 1,910 830 2,608 566 62 347 60

2001 6,172 1,799 825 2,428 552 50 459 58

2002 6,099 1,728 787 2,466 547 51 461 59

2003 6,278 1,688 795 2,628 574 54 477 62

2004 6,653 1,746 819 2,892 588 54 486 68

2005* 7,004 1,807 844 3,125 603 54 496 75

2006* 7,352 1,870 873 3,346 618 55 506 84

2007* 7,721 1,936 904 3,582 633 55 516 95


1) After discounts

2) Excludes agency commission

3) Excludes production costs

4) Excludes classified advertising

5) Magazines excludes directories but include newspaper supplements



Newspaper: El Pais (daily, 435,000)

Business magazine: Emprendedores (monthly, 66,000)

Consumer magazine: Pronto (weekly, 938,000)

Most-watched TV programme (2003): Eurovision: Ha Llegado El Momento

Best new TV format: Minutes, where actors endorse brands


Circulation: Oficina para la Justificacion de la Difusion (OJD)

Readership: The Audience Media Research Association - Spain (AIMC)

conducts the General Media Study (EGM)

TV viewing: TNS


Newspapers: Diario El Pais, Recoletos Grupo de Comunicacion

Magazines: Hachette Filipacchi

Television: RTVE (public), Mediaset, Canal+


Media topic du jour - Whether large advertisers will use other media as opposed to TV.

Reigning media guru and why - Jose Maria Bergareche, the vice-president of Vocento, the merged Grupo Correo and Prensa Espanola. He has more than 30 years of media experience.

Media mogul to be seen dining with and why? - Paolo Vasile, Telecinco's chief executive. The TV channel went public in 2004 and is now included in the Ibex 35. Shares have gone up by 45 per cent since its flotation.

Car to drive - The new Mercedes CLS.

Top-selling beer brand? - Mahou.

Phone to carry - The Sony Ericsson V800. If you're running late, you can start your presentation from the taxi by doing your introduction via 3G.

Whatever you do, don't say ... "Beckham plays better than Raul."

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