Cable TV advertising experienced a slight increase of 1 percent for the month thanks to a strong showing by MTV and the Discovery Channel. Overall TV ad spending was up 7 percent in July compared to the previous year, according to Standard Media Index.
SMI also reported that broadcast advertising was down 2 percent in July, which was surprising because there were a number of events in the month such as the Women's World Cup, Special Olympics and the ESPY Awards that typically draw a huge number of viewers.
Cable, meanwhile, had strong performance by a handful of networks like MTV and Discovery. According to James Fennessy, chief commercial officer for SMI, who spoke with Broadcasting & Cable, cable's performance was very mixed because many networks are suffering double-digit ratings declines over the summer, while a few networks are performing very strong.
Big advertising spenders in July included pharmaceutical marketers, non-alcoholic beverage makers and quick-serve restaurants.
SMI's report on ad spending isn't that surprising considering Nielsen recently reported that viewership of broadcast and cable channels dropped 3 percent this summer compared with the same period last year, and was down fully 6 percent from the summer of 2013, according to a Wall Street Journal report citing Nielsen numbers. The research firm counted an average of 94.7 million viewers of cable and broadcast TV this summer.
Nielsen also noted that the recent Republican presidential primary debate was the highest-rated non-sports cable telecast of all time, giving Fox News more than 24 million viewers.
- see this Broadcasting & Cable report
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