Future of TV Media Planning and Buying Budget

Streaming should account for 20-30% of your TV budget, Comcast says


By Hannah Bowler, Senior Reporter

June 14, 2022 | 3 min read

Advertisers should spend between 20-30% of their TV budget on streaming and the rest on linear, a Comcast Advertising report has recommended.

Comcast Advertising report shows streaming / linear budget split

The Comcast Advertising report shows a streaming-linear budget split / Pexels

For years brands have struggled to know how to divide the budget between traditional TV and digital video, often relying on gut feeling. The Drum understands the current average percentage is around 15%, but this is anecdotal.

By analyzing 20,000 campaigns Comcast has weighed up the reach of a streaming campaign against its price to base its recommendation. It claimed that while advertisers could get away with adjusting their budgets between 10-40%, spending above 40% of the budget on streaming would be wasteful as the benefits of TV advertising still outweigh streaming.

The recommendation is based on findings from the Actionable Insights for the Modern TV Advertiser report published by Comcast Advertising, which combines Comcast’s ad sales team, Effectv, and its media and technology arm, FreeWheel.

General manager of Effectv James Rooke said: “For years, advertisers have been asking us how to best balance investments across traditional TV and streaming platforms in order to enhance campaign performance.” He said advertisers shouldn’t be making guesses, but instead focus on the data.

So why should more of the budget be spent on streaming? The report showed viewers are being exposed to more digital ads – in fact, an increase of 45% from 2020 to 2021. It also showed that around half of households reached by streaming are incremental to a TV campaign.

Although streaming should be a bigger slice of the pie, the report said that linear TV should still be the foundation for any campaign. In terms of reach, traditional TV still delivers the majority of campaign reach – roughly 82% still derives from TV.

The report showed that live is still king, with a hefty 89% of linear watched live TV and 54% of streaming viewed live.

Elsewhere, the report revealed that targeted campaigns doubled year-on-year in 2021. While hyper-targeting can deliver quick and obvious RIO, Comcast Advertising warned advertisers that targeting can run the risk of missing future potential consumers. The report instead advised a combined approach to hit potential consumers with traditional TV, and then use addressable to get those quicker sales.

The most radical shift in buying behavior was in programmatic, which grew 80% year-on-year. The dramatic increase in programmatic ads aligns with European broadcasters starting to embrace programmatic and finally making their inventory available.

Interestingly, the report also highlighted the need for a more streamlined buying process after revealing sellers are working with over 60% more programmatic partners compared to 2020.

Future of TV Media Planning and Buying Budget

More from Future of TV

View all


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +