Television Advertising Costs in Australia

24 Mar 2020
Television Advertising Costs in Australia

Even in this era of the internet, television advertising still retains its position. There are some businesses that get the best revenue from the ads on television when compared to the other modes of ads. The best part about television ads over the other forms of ads is that you can convey your message effectively in a short time. Since television ads are videos, visual aids will help to attract customers easily.

As television ads hold a high potential, the cost of television ads is significantly higher. However, when you compare it with the returns on the money spent, you can understand that it’s worth the investment.

Everything to Know About TV Advertising Costs


The costs of television ads vary greatly based on several factors. There are some television advertisements which cost $5 million for just a 30 or a 40-second video!

These are however the rare cases. The cost of the usual television ads in Australia are nominal and are decided by a number of factors. Let’s have a look at some of the common influencers for deciding the TV ad costs in Australia.

What Are the Factors affecting TV Ad Cost?

Before we start looking at the factors, let’s understand the basics on which the cost is determined. The usual form of deciding the television ad costs is through CPM. CPM is the cost for a thousand people viewing your ads. This is the usual method of deciding the rates for CPM rates. There are many factors that will decide this CPM like:

1. The TV Show You Choose

When you are planning to broadcast your TV ads, there are a few primary decisions you have to make. The first is obviously the channel to approach and the next important is the TV show during which you want your ads to be broadcasted. Choose the wrong TV show and all your investments will go waste.

The companies will have variable rates based on the TV Shows during which you want it played. Some shows like the popular reality shows of Bigg Boss may have larger CPM than the usual series or kitchen shows. So pick the TV shows carefully based on your target audience.

2. The Demography of the Audience

The demography of the audience also plays a crucial role. You have to target those audiences who will have higher chances of converting and buying your products through your ads. You have to choose the right age group, the genders of the persons viewing the ads and various other characteristics when deciding the right target group.

3. Live or Recorded

The CPM for ads during the costs of the live programs is higher than the recorded ones. This is mainly due to the fact that one cannot fast-forward through the television ads during a live program which can otherwise be done if it’s a recorded program. That’s why you have to pay more for broadcasting ads during live sports.

4. The Location of the TV Ad

If you are a location-specific business, say your customers are only in Canberra, then you can choose to show your advertisements only in that region. The CPM will automatically vary based on the location you choose. Usually, the cost of TV ads for big cities are higher than the smaller places. So your ad in Canberra would cost you more than the same ad included in a suburb of Canberra.

5. The Time When the Ad Slot Is Chosen

Both the time of the year and the time of the day play a significant role in deciding the television ad costs. If you are planning to book the slot during the special occasions like Christmas and New Year or during the weekends, the cost for TV advertisements will be higher than the usual days. This is obviously due to a larger viewership on specific occasions. There will also be some occasions like the Olympics, World Championship of some popular sports, elections or some other national events that will drive up the CPM.

Similarly, the time when the ad is played during the day will influence the CPM. If you choose ad slots in the afternoon, it will be lesser than the night slots, commonly called the prime spots that are after dinner and before bedtime.

6. Broadcast or Cable

The cables are the big channels that you see on the television like MTV and VH1. The broadcast refers to the local stations or branches of big channels localized to the area. The CPM will vary for broadcasts and cables. Since the cable caters to a wide base and has a better selection of demographic who are ready to buy, the CPM of cable is higher than the broadcast.

7. The Length of the Ads

Most ads are usually created for two minutes or longer than that. But the common ads you see on the television barely last a minute. This is because the length of the ads will have an impact on the cost of TV ads. The cost of running a television ad of about 20 seconds is lesser when compared to running an ad of the same nature on the same time, same day and on the same channel.

As a business owner, trying to place your ads on television, it’s vital to know about all these factors that come into play when deciding the cost of the TV advertisement. We advise you to research well on the target audience and choose the above factors to spend your money smartly.


Comparison of TV Advertisement Costs in Australia

As we discussed previously, the cost of television advertising costs varies greatly for many reasons. One reason we saw above is the channel through which you want to broadcast it. So, we will now see a sample of costs for TV advertisements of some of the major channels in Australia with respect to their time slots and duration of ads.

This is not inclusive of the production costs for creating the ad which will be completely separate from these estimates.


The Cost of TV Ads Based on the Time Slots

Since the time when the ad should be telecasted is a vital part of the CPM, let’s look at the estimates of the cost of time slots from channel 7 and channel 9.

  • For Channel 7, the cost of ads during the morning hours from 6 AM to 9 AM is around $2300 while the cost for the same timing on Channel 9 is $1200.
  • Similarly, the cost of ads during the evening hours at 5.30 PM is around $6000 on channel 7 while the cost for the same timing on channel 9 is $2900.
  • The cost of ads at the highest primetime is around $30000 on channel 7 while the cost for the same timing on channel 9 is $20000.

As you can see, the rates vary extensively based on the time you wish to broadcast which is directly related to the number of the people watching the ads. The cost for ads in midnight and around 4 PM is the lowest in most channels.

The Cost of TV Ads Based on the Duration of the Ad

Let’s now compare the cost for broadcasting a television ad of 15 seconds over the same kind of ad which runs for the higher duration, say 30 seconds.

  • On channel 7, the cost for running ads of 15 seconds during the highest primetime is around $23000 while the cost of running an ad of 30-second duration comes to around $38000.
  • On channel 9, the cost for running ads of 15 seconds during the highest primetime is around $15000 while the cost of running an ad of 30-second duration comes to around $25000.

There is a definite difference in running ads based on how long the duration of the ad is. So if there is any possibility to deliver the same effect in an ad of 15 seconds or less, it could make a great impact on your expenditure.


When you have decided to venture into telecasting your ads on Australian television, make sure to consider these factors from the beginning when you are discussing the budget. Cut some slack in the budget for TV advertisements during the holidays and weekends too for better exposure.

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