how and how much does it cost?

how and how much does it cost?

If today companies and brands are increasingly directing their advertising campaigns towards the web, television remains a widely used medium in the distribution of advertising.

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Why do a TV ad?

Television is a medium strongly favored by the French. More than three quarters of the French population, or 44 million people, watch television on a daily basis. Viewers spend more than 4 hours a day watching TV content, live or in replay. This association between daily coverage and viewing time gives strength to the effectiveness of television advertising.

Even today, TV advertising is seen as a guarantee of quality and trust. Television helps to develop a more credible image of the products or services that companies and brands want to promote. Distributed in a secure environment, it allows the public to have a better understanding of the value of these offers.

Television is also recognized as a media of notoriety. Broadcasting a TV ad allows the public to quickly get to know a company or brand. The retention rate for television commercials is 42% compared to 23% for advertisements broadcast by YouTube. Most often, the spots broadcast on television are cited as advertisements that have impressed the public. This is proof that television exercises a very significant power over viewers, a power supported by indicators of notoriety, image and attractiveness of companies and brands:

  • +27% brand recall
  • + 14% brand image
  • + 39% brand appeal

Television is a mainstream medium that allows businesses and brands to quickly reach large, targeted audiences based on the time of airing of their advertisements.

Thanks to the multiplication of screens, but also to the development of replay or live digital, the consumption of TV content has evolved. Today, all these technological advances make television a multi-screen medium that viewers can access from their computer, tablet or mobile.

Television advertising produces direct effects on sales. According to a study carried out by Ekimetrics over 6 years on 150 brands, an investment of 1 euro in TV advertising generates an average of 5.2 euros in turnover. A second study conducted by the SNPTV showed that a TV advertising campaign brings in an average of +20% in sales in the short term.

Companies and brands are also finding, through TV advertising, a way to increase their website traffic and the volume of their queries on search engines. A television advertising campaign thus generates on average:

  • + 65% website traffic
  • + 25% search engine queries
  • + 80% app downloads on mobile

TV advertising also makes it possible to reinforce the effectiveness of the advertising campaigns of companies and brands on other media up to:

  • + 15% in press and display
  • +20% on online videos
  • + 25% on social networks
  • + 30% on the display
  • + 40% in radio

How to make a TV ad?

Set a communication objective

The first step in creating a TV advertising campaign is to choose a clear objective. It can be:

  • sell a product
  • make themselves known to the general public
  • develop brand awareness
  • boost the traffic of its points of sale or its website
  • recruit new customers

Either way, TV advertising will promote the company and the brand. It is therefore absolutely essential to clearly identify the message to be conveyed to customers.

Identify your target

The next step therefore consists in determining which audience the TV ad will address, in order to then identify the appropriate broadcasting slots. Businesses and brands need to know who their regular customers are and what types of consumers they want to reach. To do this, they create and build on their buyer persona. They can also target their advertising campaign according to social demographic criteria such as gender and age. On television, advertising must, in fact, be broadcast in the advertising screens on which the target is most present.

Define the advertising budget

To set up a TV commercial, you also need to develop a budget. For example, a TV ad broadcast in the morning will not have the same cost as an ad broadcast in the afternoon, evening or in the middle of the night. To create an advertising spot adapted to their budget, companies and brands must therefore ask themselves certain questions:

  • Do they have the means to call on a media agency to produce and broadcast their TV advertising?
  • Do they have the possibility of assuming the price of advertising space at times allowing them to reach their audience?
  • What means can they invest in the filming of advertising?

Determine the communication period

Then, you have to define the communication period of television advertising. An advertising campaign lasts on average between 2 and 3 weeks. The TF1 channel advises, for example, that this duration does not exceed 28 days. After producing their TV spot, however, companies will have to take into account the validation time of their campaign by the ARPP, the Professional Advertising Regulatory Authority, a deadline set at approximately 15 days.

Select TV channel

One of the determining factors in the broadcast of a TV ad is the choice of the television channel. Thus, by choosing a well-known national channel, companies and brands will expose their advertising message to a wider, but perhaps less targeted audience. However, they will be able to benefit from more extensive coverage on more confidential channels for the same budget, as advertising space is sold at a lower price.

Choose the broadcast area of ​​your campaign

Finally, companies and brands must determine the area in which their advertising campaign will be broadcast. They have the opportunity to communicate their message:

  • throughout France thanks to national television channels or on replay platforms
  • in a specific geographical area thanks to local channels, segmented TV. Replay programs also offer this possibility of segmentation and geolocation of viewers

Examples of Successful TV Ads

Disneyland Paris

To promote its reopening in June 2021 after several months of closure due to Covid-19, Disneyland Paris has launched a new advertising spot accompanied by the slogan “We have never had so much need to dream”. This return to television has enabled the brand to reaffirm itself with a very comprehensive media plan.

The following figures demonstrate the success of the campaign. After the broadcast of these new spots, advertising recall jumped 10.2 points from April to May 2021 according to the BrandIndex barometer. This figure comes from a study that measures the “advertising memory” of more than 1,300 brands in France with a panel of more than 600,000 people. This “advertising memory” corresponds to the percentage of respondents having seen, read or heard advertising for a brand during the previous two weeks.

Ferrero Rocher

Each year, Ferrero Rocher launches a major TV advertising campaign as the Christmas holidays approach. The brand advertises on an ad hoc basis and plays on a notion of expectation and exception among viewers. Despite a time-limited presence on the screens, the advertiser still imposes itself in the minds of its target, who remembers the spot and therefore the brand.

In 2018, Ferrero notably made an impression with its spot entitled “Revoilà” in which advertisers highlighted the concern for product quality. The brand then explained why it was impossible to find its chocolates in the summer and that it preferred to withdraw its products from the shelves because of the heat which could affect the quality of the chocolate. The spot thus conveyed a notion of exclusivity over the winter period and a reassurance of the target on quality.

When he returned to the small screen in October 2018, again according to the BrandIndex barometer, Ferrero Rocher saw his advertising recall increase by 18 points, from 9% to 27%.


In November 2021, on the occasion of the Christmas holidays, Orange designed an advertising campaign that celebrated the reunion with loved ones, featuring this symbolic and touching moment after two years upset by the confinements. Playing on emotion and nostalgia, the ad is a 90-second mini-film recounting the daily life of a snowman. He is forced to stay in his house for several months, waiting for the return of winter to finally be able to find his friends. This film was successfully broadcast on television, but also on digital channels.

How much does a TV ad cost?

The prices of a TV ad remain very variable. Between production and broadcasting costs, many essential elements determine the price of a TV commercial:

  • the number of actors and sets included in the ad
  • the duration of the advertisement
  • the target audience
  • the channel(s) chosen for the broadcast
  • the delivery times desired by the brand

National channels, TNT or satellite, live or replay: each television channel applies specific rates for the broadcasting of advertising on its channels. The budget will also depend on the day and time of broadcast as well as the program to which the advertisement is attached.

Currently, the price for broadcasting a 30-second TV commercial is:

  • between 2,000 and 10,000 euros in the morning or afternoon on weekdays
  • between 15,000 and 30,000 euros in access prime time and the weekend
  • between 30,000 and 50,000 euros in prime time or during a popular program

For example, a 30-second ad broadcast weekday afternoons on TF1 or M6 costs between 3,000 and 7,000 euros. As for commercials associated with an American film broadcast for the first time on French television, the cost of broadcasting can often exceed 50,000 euros.

To go further, download this free guide to marketing positioning and use it to define effective marketing positioning for your business.What is marketing positioning?

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