Media Buyers Not Overly Concerned About Thursday’s Stock Plunge

Media buyers said ad spending is based on many, many macro economic factors that happen over a longer period of time — say six, eight, 10 months

Last Updated: August 9, 2011 @ 10:52 AM

The biggest stock market dive since December 2008 hasn't freaked out media buyers. Yet.

Buyers who spend billions of their marketing clients' dollars on advertising across all media, particularly television, say they were not panicked by Thursday's 512-point Dow stock plunge. They noted that a short dip is not going to impact long-term media advertising plans.

"No one went home last night worrying that clients were going to cancel or make cutbacks to any ad campaigns," said one media agency executive, who did not want to speak for attribution — even before the Dow recovered early Friday. 

Media buyers said ad spending is based on many, many macro economic factors that happen over a longer period of time — say six, eight, 10 months.

"The idea that marketers ad-spending levels might change because of one bad day in the stock market is foolhardy thinking," another agency executive told TheWrap. "Decisions aren't made that quickly and are not based on a one-day event."

Media buyers point out that ad campaigns and advertising dollars are committed to for the long-term, and also that each advertiser usually has multiple brands — and each brand is unique in who it is trying to reach with its advertising. 

There is a danger, however, that advertisers exercise cancellation options. TV execs stressed the need for a vibrant economy for that reason earlier this week. But media buyers said that such cancellations would not stem from a particularly bad day on the stock market. 

Also read: Stock Market Plunge Puts Hollywood on Edge

"Each company has multiple brands, multiple needs and multiple decision makers — and it takes time to alter ad campaigns or ad spending that has been committed to," one media agency exec told TheWrap. "Plus, no one is going to exercise a cancellation option in August for advertising that is going to run in December based on a bad day in the stock market."

In fact, buyers say that in many instances, there is more need to advertise in a soft economy as companies need to keep their products visible even when consumers may be cutting back on what they buy.

The stock market is just one of multiple macro economic factors are used in determining advertising plans and campaigns. If the Dow continued to go down slowly and steadily over a period of months, that could have some impact on advertisers possibly getting concerned about ad spending.

Even in tough economic times, there are always going to be categories and products that people are going to have to find a way to buy. And even if production levels are cutback, most advertisers are still going to have to market those products to consumers.