Memo Pad: Tom Ford's New Deal... Ad Spending Declines...

On Tuesday, word broke that Tom Ford would be getting his first movie, “A Single Man,” distributed by the Weinstein Co.

SAME STORY, DIFFERENT DAY: For the fifth consecutive quarter, ad spending was on the decline, with expenditures off 13.9 percent during the second quarter and 14.3 percent for the first half. “The rate of decline in ad spending was level throughout the second quarter,” said Jon Swallen, senior vice president research at TNS Media Intelligence. “While it’s tempting to interpret this as a positive indicator that things aren’t getting worse, the fact remains that the market has been steadily tracking at around 14 percent declines for several consecutive months, and this represents billions of lost revenue.”

In the magazine sector, advertising fell 20.9 percent, while newspaper ad expenditures dropped 24.2 percent. Internet proved once again to be one of the few bright spots, with display ads up 6.5 percent during the first half.

As for ad categories, automotive companies continued to pull back on spending, dropping 31.1 percent during the first half, followed by financial services, falling 24.3 percent, and a 18 percent decline in miscellaneous retail. Ads for personal care products fell 9.7 percent and travel and tourism was down 15.3 percent.

Verizon Communications edged out Procter & Gamble to claim the top spot in ad spending, up 3.1 percent to $1.18 billion for the first half. P&G’s ad spending dropped 20 percent during the period, to $1.17 billion, followed by AT&T, which increased spending by 6.3 percent to $976 million. Johnson & Johnson increased spending by 18 percent to $805 million, while General Motors decreased advertising by 25.9 percent to $773 million and News Corp. was down 6.9 percent to $672 million. Sprint Nextel Corp.’s ad spend shot up 55 percent to $631 million, followed by 11 percent decline at Time Warner, to $574 million. General Electric increased advertising by 5 percent to $548 million and Walt Disney Co., ended the period down 11.7 percent to $517 million.

— Amy Wicks

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