How Much Does it Cost to Buy an Ad on the Primetime Broadcast News Programs?

By Alex Weprin 

The broadcast news divisions do not have the benefit of cable subscription fees, so advertising revenue is pivotal for their success.

While the signature news programs are typically the morning shows like “Today,” and “Good Morning America” and the evening newscasts like “CBS Evening News” and “NBC Nightly News,” all three broadcast networks will occasionally program news shows in primetime.

Advertising Age talked to media buyers, and calculated just how much a 30 second ad costs on every primetime network show. The most expensive, not surprisingly, was Fox’s “American Idol,” which generates over $400,000 for a 30 second spot.

Most returning comedies and dramas were in the $100,000-200,000 range, while the freshman series were a little cheaper.

How much do the primetime news shows bring in? Find out after the jump.

Because news programming targets the less valuable 25-54 demographic, and often air on less popular nights, the shows do not bring in as much advertising revenue as their entertainment counterparts.

The most expensive is the CBS Sunday newsmagazine staple “60 Minutes,” which brings in just over $98,000 for a 30 second spot, comparable to many entertainment shows.

ABC’s Friday evening newsmagazine “20/20” is next, bringing in nearly $72,000 per spot.

NBC newsmagazine “Dateline” is third, bringing in just over $50,000.

CBS’ Saturday evening newsmagazine “48 Hours Mystery” rounds out the group, bringing in just under $35,000 per spot.