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Saturday, April 09, 2005

Online Media Buyers: 'We Buy Just-In-Time'

MediaPost Publications Home of MediaDailyNews, MEDIA and OMMA Magazines
Online Media Buyers: 'We Buy Just-In-Time'
by Wendy Davis, Friday, Apr 8, 2005 8:04 AM EST

THE SURGE IN BROADBAND VIDEO ads may be making the Internet look akin to the TV advertising marketplace, but research conducted by MediaPost and Deutsche Bank (see "Online Ad Spending Up In First Quarter," ) reveals there are some important media buying differences, especially timing. While TV buyers typically buy time well in advance of their air dates -- in the case of the upfront, as much as a year ahead of time -- online media buyers say they buy just in time for their campaigns to run.

Nearly three out of four--70 percent--of the 108 media buyers and planners surveyed reported that they commit to inventory purchases only three months or less in advance. "The commitment, relative to TV, is still considered spot," said Jeetil Patel, a Deutsche Bank senior analyst.

Overall, 50 percent the respondents reported purchasing online media less than two months in advance of a campaign, while 20 percent purchased Internet inventory two to three months prior to the campaign. An additional 22 percent reported making online buys three to six months in advance, and 7 percent said they bought Web media more than six months in the future.

One reason for the short lead times, proposed Deutsche Bank, is that publishers are reluctant to sell inventory in advance if there's a chance that ad prices will rise in the future.

The duration of online campaigns remained flat from the fourth quarter of last year through the first three months of this year, according to the survey. Sixty percent of respondents said their clients' campaigns were of the same [duration]. Twenty-six percent reported that campaigns ran for longer, while 14 percent reported shorter terms.

The survey was conducted online by InsightExpress using members of the MediaPost advisory panel.

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