News / Sensory Interactive Releases Fall 2018 Times Square Advertising Report

The fall 2018 edition of Sensory Interactive’s Times Square Advertising Report shows the demand for space on Times Square’s large-format digital displays hitting a new high for a non-holiday period.

The report, which is prepared five times per year, is based on a visual observation of advertising and sponsorship activity across 71 digital displays in the Times Square market.

Its key metric looks at the ratio of paid advertising to unpaid “house” ads and public service announcements. A higher percentage of display inventory devoted to paid ads indicates stronger market demand from advertisers and sponsors.

Based on this measure, the demand for display space in the district grew for the third straight quarter, reaching 84%. This surpasses last month’s 81% to set a new benchmark for the highest non-holiday level since we began conducting the survey in 2015. The increase in paid advertising reduced the display time devoted to PSAs, while there was a slight increase in the volume of unpaid house ads that promoted the displays’ owners or media sales groups.

In addition to measuring the percentage of paid advertising on Times Square’s displays, the Times Square Advertising Report also analyzes the district’s top advertising categories, most active media sales companies, and top five advertised brands.

While there was little change in the rankings of media sales companies this season, there was some movement in the top advertising categories. Fall 2018 saw a dip in the number of advertisers in the media and entertainment category, countered by growth in the retail category as we move closer to the holiday shopping season. There was also an increase in advertising for Broadway performances.

In the list of the most-advertised brands (based on the number of displays each brand’s ads ran on during the survey period), a robust campaign for the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black allowed it to knock T-Mobile from the top spot in the rankings. At number three, Jockey was one of the retail brands with a significant presence in advance of the holiday shopping season, while the New York Music Festival and Canada Dry rounded out the top five.

The report is an outgrowth of Sensory Interactive’s work on some of Times Square’s largest digital media installations, where the company provides services that include revenue strategy consulting, media sales brokerage, design, implementation, and operations management.

Click on the thumbnail below to view the report in your browser or download a PDF version here.