No one told cinema advertisers about the economic downturn, it seems, as the two main companies, Screenvision and National CineMedia, continued to release a stream of good news over the last several weeks. Their solid performance bodes well for the future of not just cinema advertising but the digital out-of-home medium in general.Most recently, Screenvision announced that it has signed deals with new advertising clients in a variety of industries, evidently hoping to cash in on holiday movie-going this season. Among Screenvision’s new advertisers are the jewelry retailer Zales, the Dish Network, SanDisk, Sony, and Buena Vista Syndication.
According to Screenvision, Zales is promoting its “Celebration Diamond” sale with a 30-second spot called “Love Rocks” in Screenvision’s premium pre-show ad pod. Meanwhile the Dish network is promoting its “Turbo HD” program with a 60-second spot featuring Frank Caliendo, the comedic impersonator; Sony’s 30-second spot will be its first ever for the PlayStation in a cinema ad campaign; SanDisk is promoting camera memory cards; and Buena Vista is promoting its new series, “Wizard’s First Rule.” Screenvision also reported that past clients Microsoft and PBS will be returning to the cinema ad network with new campaigns this holiday season.
Three weeks ago, Screenvision’s main competitor, National CineMedia, announced strong third-quarter results — with 9.9% growth in ad revenue compared to the same period in 2007, increasing from $91.3 million last year to $100.3 million this year. The proportion of ad inventory used remained about the same — 92.9% in the recent quarter versus 93.1% last year. The increase in revenues was due mostly to a 17.2% hike in ad rates and drove 18% growth in income, which rose from $9.2 million to $10.9 million.
NCM also introduced a new online platform, http://www.NCM.com, that it hopes will become an entertainment destination. It will offer interactive guides and features about movies, TV and NCM’s “Fathom” events, with other entertainment categories to follow. One of the new interactive features, HyperTrailer, allows viewers to pause, rewind and navigate to related content areas while watching a movie trailer. Visitors can download widgets that help them find the nearest and soonest movie showings, as well as buy tickets via Fandango and NCM’s affiliated theater circuit Web sites.