The market is smaller than it was pre-storm, with a bigger Hispanic population and slightly older median age. Stations are getting top dollar for Katrina programming this week.
Auto advertising is down on both TV and radio. Political spending will flood the market later this year, with lots of statewide elections. Overall TV spending is off 4%.
In New Orleans both TV and radio spending are up slightly versus last year, with many tight dayparts. Demand will increase further through the remainder of the year, as political spending will be active well past the November general elections. Not including political, TV spending in New Orleans is up low-single-digit percentages versus a year ago, led by huge spending increases from the legal and financial services categories.
Television spending is up 8% to 10% thanks to Super Bowl and Mardi Gras and will stay strong this summer. Radio’s also up, helped by Times-Picayune cutbacks.
A new poll has 76% of New Orleans residents saying local TV news will be their first choice now that the New Orleans Times-Picayune is moving from a daily publication schedule to three days a week, followed by 44% who said they’ll turn to the Internet.
Advance Publications’ announcement in May that it was cutting back the print edition of New Orleans’ venerable newspaper The Times-Picayune and expanding digital coverage sent shockwaves through the city, raising a tremendous hue and cry from the daily’s print loyalists. The question now facing “Crescent City” media is whether the market is ready to embrace a digitally-centric news future. But that media isn’t waiting on an answer: Recent weeks have brought announcements of new digital alliances and initiatives, not to mention some cosmetic surgery for the much-maligned interface at NOLA.com.
In a city that has been through a lot in the past few years, New Orleans’ online players win over the loyalty of their audiences with a dedication to local news and a little something extra — or as they say in New Orleans, “lagniappe.”