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Early Morning Local News Slots Take Off: Buyers Find Hot Segment Delivers Good Demos of Driven Early Birds By Laureen Mile

NEW YORK – Suddenly this spring the sleeping spot TV market arose from its somnolence some

Local early morning news (6-to-7 a.m.) has become one of the hottest programming genres in television. Bonita LeFlore, senior vp of local broadcast at Ayer calls early morning local a ‘viable if not more efficient’ way to buy local news than the traditional evening and late news programs. She adds, ‘It’s definitely a growing daypart because advertisers are looking for news.’
Laura Silton, svp/local broadcast of McCann-Erickson, points out that in comparison to daytime (of which early morning used to be considered a part), it’s ridiculously overpriced. But she says, times change, and agencies have been breaking it out as a separate daypart for years. It’s a way to get men cheaply, and it nets a preponderance of working people.
One user of the daypart is the automakers. ‘Cars have traditionally tried to look at balanced audiences. Everyone clusters to late news and the same eight prime shows, which drives the prices up. Early morning is a way to reach the elusive male. It’s almost supplanting early news as a daypart,’ said Pat McNew of Petry Television in Detroit.
The four New York stations offering local news in the 6-7 a.m. daypart have collectively grown by an 8 share from May ’92 to May ’93. This came in a time when New York 1, an all-news cable channel, made its debut. One might have expected New Yorkers’ appetite for local news to be satisfied. Instead, it seems to be growing.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)