Sports Advertising on TV: Rounding Up the Truth On Flat World Perceptions

09.06.2016 Cox Media

Why You Can Count on Cable

I recently had a conversation about vacationing with a friend – telling him how I love to go on cruises, and along the way I tried to convince him and his family to go along on one with us. He responded to me that he’d never go on one as he had a fear of the ocean, especially sea sickness. I attempted to address his fears with medical solutions, and personal experiences, but there was still some doubt in his mind. Understandable? Yes. Even as a friend, he had reason to doubt my standpoint because I was trying to sell him on something.

Now imagine having that same conversation, and when asking “Why not cruise?” the response is “Because the world is flat – aren’t you terrified of falling off?” Sounds crazy doesn’t it? I mean, it’s the sort of response that if I were chewing on food during that answer, he’d probably be wearing it before finishing his sentence.

But why do I bring this up?

Recently I spoke to the owner of a local sports bar and I asked him why he doesn’t advertise on TV – especially as we are coming up on the most wonderful time of year for sports and advertising alike (with 9 out of 10 Americans considering themselves a sports fan, of course it is!) And to my astonishment, he gave me a “world is flat answer” – read on.



Local Businesses Advertise on ESPN and NBC Sports

“TV is TV” – was his “world is flat response.” And no disrespect to him, he based this answer on a few things he assumed to be the case without seeking answers or asking the right questions. He had done some inquiring with local broadcast networks like ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX, and what he assumed was that everything outside of those networks were not available to him locally – which, if you are interested in consistently advertising alongside sports, would severely limit your options.

Networks like ESPN, NBC Sports, Fox Sports Network and a myriad of college sports networks are instantly at your disposal with your local Cable advertising sales division, and actually can’t be accessed with the local broadcast affiliates. In fact, 87% of the 7000+ live sporting events each year air on cable rather than broadcast TV with live sports programming available every day of the year. Saying this another way, you have access to the majority of advertising during sports programming by just going to your local cable media company – practically a one-stop sports programming shop.  Sure, it sounds illogical that NBC can only sell time on NBC and not NBC Sports, but it’s true (for NBC Sports network – see your local cable ad sales division).

Another huge advantage is that, depending on where you live, you might be able to just advertise on the sports networks of your choice in a small zone of your greater city (check with your cable media company to find out). For the Sports Bar owner, this means his world goes from flat to round as he runs his ads on television in a smaller part of town, much closer to his two locations.

If this is news to you, like it was to my Sports Bar friend, go ahead and:

  • Find out who your local cable provider is and find out how to reach their advertising sales division (Cox Media, Comcast Spotlight, etc.).
  • Find their website and fill out a form to be contacted, or just give them a call.
  • Learn your options – ask them what networks are available to place your ads on, ask specifically if it’s possible to buy smaller zones and not the entire city you live in (request a zone map – they’ll send it to you so you get an idea of the area you’ll cover).
  • Come prepared with information like who the typical person who walks into your place of business is, what they look like, how old they are, their interests (if you think you know). Then also tell them who you’d like to walk through your door.

After this, you’ll be a major step closer to having your brand on College Football, Monday and Thursday Night Football, March Madness, NBA and NHL games, golf, bull riding, sports highlight shows, you name it! The only edge you’ll be falling off of is the edge of your seat – like other emotional and loyal fans while they tune in to sports programming (by the way, 95% of sports programming is watched live, which means they aren’t fast forwarding past your ads). It’s time your advertising strategy sails in a round world allowing your business to discover new options.

Go Sports… Go Cable TV… grow your business!

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Cox Media

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