Advertising to business travellers: TV or terminal?

BLOOMBERG TELEVISION, the boob-tube arm of Michael Bloomberg’s business news and information empire, is launching a huge new ad campaign aimed at business travellers passing through London, the Drum reports. The push will include video screens at rail and Underground stations and at Heathrow and London City airports, as well as 24-hour screens at offices in the City of London and print ads.It is a fascinating time for Bloomberg TV to be investing in expansion: ratings for CNBC, which wins 75% of cable business-news viewers, has hit a 20-year low among 25- to 54-year-olds, and average total daytime viewership for that network is half what it was in 2008. My suspicion is that viewers have come round to my way of thinking, that watching cable business-news is a waste of time. But perhaps Bloomberg sees its main competitor’s weakness as an opportunity. The media chattering class had long theorised that the television business was essentially a loss-leader for Bloomberg’s highly profitable terminal business. If that was the case, Bloomberg TV was an especially expensive marketing tool. The network, which is now nearly 20 years old, has never drawn more than 10% of the business-news audience or turned a profit, and Bloomberg executives have at times considered exiting the TV business, according to the Wall Street Journal, which reported late last year that Bloomberg …

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