St. Louis filed a lawsuit against the National Football League on Wednesday over last year’s decision to let the Rams relocate to Los Angeles. City authorities, the county and the St. Louis Regional Convention and Sports Complex Authority — which owns the team’s former stadium in St. Louis — filed a 52-page complaint over the decision, accusing the league of violating its own relocation guidelines.
Automotive advertising and popular sports teams are driving a healthy media market in St. Louis. Demand for TV inventory is up and many advertisers are coming in late, meaning those who buy early will save money before rates increase. There are a number of ad categories spending on TV, but automotive advertisers are having the greatest impact.
The St. Louis media economy has been off year-to-year for much of 2013, but fourth quarter is expected to grow by double-digit percentages in part from a rush of holiday retail spending. Buyers say TV has been slightly down versus a year ago with tough comparisons to an Olympic and political year. But spending has picked up and now stations are expecting a 10% to 12% year-over-year boost in fourth quarter.
The move by Gannett Co. to buy Belo Corp., announced June 13, is among several big changes that will affect the St. Louis television market, leading to changes in oversight and potentially to fewer jobs.
By one metric, Pittsburgh residents watched more live TV in the February sweep than other Nielsen large markets, while St. Louis led in time-shifted viewing. The data, part of Nielsen’s first “Local Watch” report, looked at the average daily viewing among the 25-to-54 demo during the most recently completed sweeps period.
After a slow start to the year, advertisers are ramping up spending to end the first quarter. Retail and casinos are hot, and primetime is very tight.
Most markets are expected to see significant political ad spending in 2012, but few will see the level of back-to-back political advertising as St. Louis. Because of its location on the Missouri-Illinois border, St. Louis will receive political spending from both states. In fact, for over half of next year the market will be in a lowest-unit-rate political window for one race or another.
St. Louis is a web of individual communities with strong identities and the most effective digital news players in the market have figured out how to weave themselves into that web, one comprising users who epitomize a humble, conservative Midwest sensibility. But it was a spring tornado that really sparked online traffic.
The Sinclair-owned St. Louis ABC affiliate this week launched STL Now on ABC 30. Aside from the fact that it’s a one-woman show (anchor Courtney Gousman), the most striking aspect is that these newscasts are clearly not live.