The cost of a 30-second ad in the final episode of [Lost] is coming in around a whopping $900,000, according to media buyers. […]

During last year’s upfront, a 30-second spot for “Lost” was selling for an average of $213,563, according to Advertising Age’s annual survey of ad costs in prime-time broadcast shows.

via Advertising Age.

The Ad Age piece notes a number of other  recent and historical 30 second ad costs for comparison:

2009-2010 ad costs

  • 2010 Academy Awards $1.3-1.5 million
  • 2009-2010 Sunday Night Football $339,700
  • 2009-2010 24 $200,000-$280,000

Historical finale ad costs

  • 2004 Friends finale $1.5-2.3 million
  • 1998 Seinfeld finale $1.4-1.8 million
  • 1983 M*A*S*H finale $450,000
  • 2005 Everybody Loves Raymond finale $1.3 million
  • 2006 Today Show – Katie Couric “finale” $110.000 (2x normal rate)

While 4x the rate of a standard episode of Lost does seem extreme, the Ad Age piece recounts some historical precedent for similar increases. Unfortunately, except for the Today show number, the Ad Age piece gave no numbers for the other finale’s “normal” ad rates.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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