Statistics on the US TV fight among TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Priceline
Since June 2, TripAdvisor, the hotel reviews site, has been broadcasting its first TV advertisement in the US. The campaign adds to the cacophony of pitches aimed at American consumers by the brands of parent companies Priceline and Expedia.
In June, TripAdvisor dropped an estimated $3.6 million on TV ads, which was about 14% of total TV spend by online travel companies, according to iSpot.tv, a monitoring service. The ad ran nearly 1,000 times, and it touts the company’s new hotel metasearch service.
TripAdvisor’s fully ramped up campaign could be nearly double that share, considering the company’s stated commitment to devote up to $30 million on the ad in the US during summer and autumn, according to AdWeek.
So in the second half of 2013, TripAdvisor could become the most heavily advertised digital travel brand on American TV.
June 2013 rankings
In June Hotwire was the most advertised online travel brand on US TV, according to Cowen and Company, an investment bank, whose research cites iSpot.tv data. Hotwire’s spots aired 3,069 times at an estimated cost of $4.4 million.
Priceline.com came in second place among brands; it spent an estimated $3.9 million on 1,542 airings.
TripAdvisor was in third place. Not far behind was Booking.com, which began advertising ads in the US this year and which is believed to have spent $2.3 million last month.
Looked at from the vantage point of parent companies, Expedia, Inc., was in the pole position, given that it dropped an estimated $12 million on ads last month — taking up more than half of all online travel brand advertising on TV.
The TV campaigns put into context
Even so, the expenditure would still only be a small part of the overall budget. TripAdvisor will spend an estimated $275 million on advertising of all kinds in 2013, according to Kevin Kopelman, equity research analyst at Cowen & Company.
That’s chump change compared with the outlay of its giant corporate competitors: Priceline.com Inc is forecast to spend $1.88 billion in advertising its various brands in 2013, while Expedia Inc is predicted to spend $1.7 billion.
If you want to see the TripAdvisor ad, someone has posted it on YouTube:
Sean O’Neill is a New Jersey-based reporter for Tnooz. He is also a daily contributor of consumer news to LonelyPlanet.com.
He used to work for BBC Travel, BudgetTravel.com, and Kiplinger's, and used to live in London, New York City, and Washington, DC.