Why Viacom Feels Confident about Its Advertising Business



Viacom’s advertising business

Viacom (VIAB) is currently undergoing a transition toward a focus on its core flagship brands. The company’s advertising upfronts have reflected this changed business strategy under the company’s new CEO (chief executive officer), Robert Bakish, and its new head of advertising sales, Sean Moran.

According to an Adweek report from June this year, Viacom saw its CPM (cost per thousand viewers) rise by a “high single-digit” this year.

CPM is an advertising metric that indicates the cost to advertisers for reaching 1,000 viewers. The report states that in ad upfronts, Viacom also changed its strategy of giving a presentation about its programming to advertisers to a focus on a one-on-one with advertisers through intimate dinners.

According to the report, advertisers also give a positive response to Viacom’s rebranding of the Paramount Network and its Nickelodeon network, which focuses on kids’ programming.

Viacom’s fiscal 2Q17 ended at the end of calendar 1Q17. Its advertising revenues fell 1% in fiscal 2Q17, while the company’s advertising revenues in the US (SPY) fell 4% YoY (year-over-year).

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Comcast’s advertising business

Comcast (CMCSA) had very successful ad upfronts this year, with its NBCUniversal network receiving $6.5 billion in advertising commitments for the upcoming television season. This was 8% higher than the company’s ad upfronts last year.

Comcast also had an ad CPM in the high-single digits this year and is looking at monetizing its advertising through better-targeted advertising capabilities, offering products for both traditional television advertising and through digital platforms.


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