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TV Advertising

TV advertising has been around since the 1930s. Advertisers pay for and create a body of content developed specifically for television (‘spots’) that then appears in commercial breaks within programming.


Television Commercials

Television commercials or spots are the most common form of TV advertising. They appear during commercial breaks and generally last 15 to 60 seconds. They are used for both brand and direct response advertising.


A TV sponsorship is made up of sponsorship ‘credits’ before, during and after a particular programme, series of programmes, or themes (e.g. Client X sponsors film on Channel 4). It makes a clear association in consumers’ minds between the brand and the property in question.

Product Placement

Product placement involves a business paying for its products or services to be featured within a TV programme. This can be as simple as a presenter wearing clothing by a particular brand or a particular make of car being mentioned or driven by one of the characters.


Infomercials are much longer TV ads made in the style of a review programme. They are the broadcast equivalent of advertorials and generally air in low-traffic periods (e.g. late at night) or on specialist shopping channels.

How is it measured?

TV advertising is measured in terms of impacts (views) and/or TVRs (percentage of audience reached)

How is it bought?

TV advertising is bought either by spot or by impacts in terms of cost per thousand impacts against your target audience.


All TV advertising must follow the codes and guidelines set out by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) using the Broadcast Advertising Code (BCAP). All content of TV ads needs to be pre-approved by Clearcast.


of the UK adult population come into contact with TV advertising each week


is the average time adults spend watching TV


ads are reported to deliver the greatest impact

Benefits of TV Advertising


Television is one of the most widely consumed media in the UK. TV advertising offers a trusted and influential platform for building brand awareness, reaching a wide and engaged national audience.


TV ads capture people’s attention with a powerful combination of sound and visual cues. Modern home entertainment systems that incorporate surround sound and a curved 4K screen give you the opportunity to connect with viewers in their home through a highly engaging medium .


Ad breaks on commercial TV air every 15 minutes or so. Advertising can therefore be seen up to four times an hour, with repetition reinforcing the message to an engaged and impressionable audience.


TV advertisements can be targeted and timed in order to reach a peak audience. For example, sports betting ads are best before, during or after a football game.


TVs are in the majority of households across the UK, making it easy to get in front of a consumer. Due to the nature of the channel, the consumer is usually in a relaxed state. A TV advertisement that has a great call to action could really complement online activity i.e., a coupon code could encourage the viewer to visit the website on their phone, while waiting for their show to resume.


TV advertising delivers fame and trust: if your business is on TV, people will assume it’s doing well. Great creative opportunities mean that TV advertising can be engaging, memorable and convincing.

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