Media buyers are accusing some ITV companies of trying to artificially
hike their ad rates over the summer by advertising their sister cable
and satellite channels.
TV buyers claim that up to pounds 3 million could be pumped into the ITV
market over the next few months by the ITV companies themselves, pushing
up prices for others.
Both Laser Sales and Carlton UK Sales are set to carry ads from within
their group. Granada Sky Broadcasting, a joint venture between Laser’s
parent company, Granada TV, and BSkyB, is planning to spend around
pounds 2 million. A substantial portion of this is expected to be spent
on Granada’s ITV channels.
The Carlton-owned cable channel, SelecTV, is also advertising on ITV
One TV buyer complained that spends were exacerbating ITV’s problems,
with media price inflation resulting from falling audiences, saying:
‘It’s a bad time for ITV companies to be soaking up airtime with their
Steve Platt, the sales director of Carlton UK Sales, said: ‘It doesn’t
make any sense for us to hike our ad rates at a time when advertisers
are complaining about inflation. We have to compete on price, and this
is just an ad campaign that has been bought and sold like any other.’