NAB: Broadcasters say digital revenue should be much more than 5% of overall pie by now

Monday morning NAB event "Digital Leaders Take Charge—President and CEO Panel." (Daniel Frankel)(Fierce photo)

LAS VEGAS—Responding to a recent study that suggested that broadcast stations currently get only 5% of their revenue from digital means, a panel of top-level digital execs from leading station groups agreed: that’s way too little. 

“I would say we’re really behind where we should be, and that probably reflects a lack of investment,” said Pat LaPlatney, CEO of Raycom Media, speaking during a Monday morning NAB session. He said station groups need to prioritize development of addressable advertising and cross-platform measurement. 

LaPlatney said that digital revenue for Raycom has “gone from something of a rounding error to a $80 million to $90 million business.”

“But we need to be a lot higher than just 5%,” added fellow panelist James Goodmon Jr., president and COO of Capitol Broadcasting Company. 

The group of C-level broadcast execs also agreed that they’ve left millions of dollars on the table by letting platforms like Google and Facebook distribute their content.

“They have cannibalized our ad model,” said Adam Symson, president and CEO of E.W. Scripps Company. “That’s their job. It’s important that as new technology emerges, we are compensated for our content.”

“I don’t blame them for what they’re doing,” LaPlatney added. “But we can’t let ourselves become too reliant on those guys. We’ve got to make our own platforms as big as they can be.”