“This will be our most economically successful games in history,” says Mark Lazarus, chairman of the NBC Sports Group, as NBC insists its Rio Olympic broadcasts are meeting most if not all its business and viewing goals, including improved ad sales activity. Lazarus says since the Summer Olympics started, it has sold $30 million additional advertising time. “We don’t anticipate selling a whole lot more.” In particular, Lazarus added, additional scatter advertising is coming more from telecommunications’ media buys. This comes on top of the $1.2 billion (1.07 billion Euros) NBC says it has pulled in advertising revenues before the games start across its broadcast, cable and digital platforms.
Lazarus says: To date, NBC is averaging a 15.6 prime-time household broadcast network rating. Some estimates were TV marketers were promised guarantee ratings slightly higher — in the high teens. But Lazarus says there is no current make-good situation for marketers. “We built in [make-good] inventory into marketer plans to make sure we met what we promised them.”
Commenting on overall viewership/ratings performance, Lazarus says, “[Broadcast] is down a little bit, but cable and digital are up.” For the digital platform, streaming of videos and social media consumption are setting new records in many areas. For example, NBC has topped 1 billion live streaming minutes so far – now exceeding any previous Summer Olympics. Lazarus says young viewers tell an important part of the story - 17% of all adults viewers watching in prime time are in the 18-34 demographic, this year, versus a 10% average for that demographic in prime time for the entire 2015-2016 TV season.
This story first appeared in the blog, The Sport Intern. The editor is Karl-Heinz Huba of Lorsch, Germany. He can be reached at ISMG@aol.com. The article is reprinted here with permission of Huba.