Fox and CBS have started to write upfront business. Movie studios moved first, sources say; that’s typical with Fox, owing to its ratings with young men who movie studios covet/target. CPM increases are lower than last year (last year’s range hovered in 5-7% territory), but no specific numbers are in yet.
TV ad buyers are creatures of habit. Every year, they take the week after the broadcast upfront presentations to mull over the networks’ new offerings and confer with clients, take off Memorial Day weekend and then start to get in the swing of the things.
For reference purposes, Fox, which kicked off last year’s upfront deal-making, as it had the past few years before that, and pretty much had wrapped its upfront ad sales by June 12, securing increases in that 5-7% range in a tough year — and this year’s sales will only be tougher for the network. Its total volume last year was down 10% from 12’s just-under-$2-billion, which was understandable given the network’s ratings declines back then. Fox sold about 80% of its ad inventory last year.