$1.5 Billion in Ad Spend for Olympics, $100 Million of It Online

Last Updated Aug 6, 2008 2:04 AM EDT

olympics.gifVia PaidContent, the Lehman Brothers held a conference call yesterday detailing their forecasts for Olympic ad spending. Analyst Doug Anmuth predicted that out of that total $1.5 billion spending on ads, only 6.6 percent of that, $100 million,would go to online. The shift to online will be slow, perhaps most of all for sports, which are seen as largely DVR-proof. From PaidContent:
Art Ventura, SVP, ad sales, for Cablevision's MSG Media: "Obviously, the economy is a question mark for everybody. But sports doesn't have much a of DVR issue around it; people want to watch it as soon as they can, not later. Olympics is still a safe harbor for ad dollars, as are most sports."
The big winners the online spend are, unsurprisingly, NBC and its marketing partner Microsoft. AOL and Yahoo are also expected to receive a portion of the spend as they gear up for Olympic coverage. Google, in a change of pace, will trail behind, bringing in revenue mainly through notoriously-difficult-to-monetize YouTube.

It's interesting to note that Anmuth's forecast of online ad spend has increased by $30 million since January, when he predicted it would tap out at $70 million for the summer event. It's unclear if the bump since the beginning of the year is related to an overall growth in predicted ad spend, or if online is simply seen as a (slightly) more lucrative destination than in January.