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Live Viewship Still Crucial to Advertisers

If you’ve ever wondered how much it would cost to air a commercial, look no further. Ad Age reported that shows with a higher live viewership command commercial-territory, so if you’re looking for air time, don’t compete with “Modern Family.”

According to Advertising Age's annual survey, the cost of running a 30-second commercial in prime time has been growing higher and higher. An ad during NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” can cost as much as $512,367. “American Idol” is slowly creeping up with $468,100 to $502,900 for 30-seconds worth of airtime, though, so football could lose its number one spot if not careful.

In an age of Hulu and DVR, advertisers still pay premium prices for programs that viewers tend to watch live. One possible reason could be that when viewers watch a show on DVR, they have the ability to fast-forward through ads. On some steaming websites, people have the ability to skip an ad after an allotted time or altogether. Also ads on websites tend to run shorter online, meaning less of them and less ad money.

Air-dates and times also play a contributing factor when calculating prices, as well as the networks the shows are being viewed on. For example, "NCIS" is consistently one of  highest-rated shows, if not the highest rated, commands a $154, 646 price tag. While "Glee," which has seen viewership decline and a good night maybe achieves half of the ratings of "NCIS," draws a whopping $267, 141 pay-day from advertisers. Even though both shows air at the same time on Tuesday, why the discrepancy? The audience demographic for "Glee" is very high in the coveted 18-34 age range and that trumps total viewership. 

Don’t fret, Sunday: you’re still in the lead for most expensive TV night, for now. Thursday once had your place with NBC's "Must See Tv Thursday." How the times have changed.

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