Apple taking ‘slow-roll’ approach to marketing TV+, spending data shows

Apple TV+ officially debuted to the public yesterday, but Apple has been teasing and promoting the launch since March. New data from iSpot.TV, first reported by The New York Times, sheds light on how much Apple is spending on marketing for TV+. The report explains that Apple is taking a ‘slow-roll’ approach to advertising the service.

According to the data, Apple spent $19.9 million television commercials for TV+ during the month of October. In comparison, Apple spent $28.6 million on television ads for the iPhone during the month.

In terms of online marketing, there were 139 unique digital ads for Apple TV+ in October, which cost the company $1.7 million. For the iPhone, Apple spent $2.3 million on 245 separate unique ads, according to data from advertising analytics platform Pathmatics.

In September, however, the story was reversed. Apple spent $3.8 million on TV+ digital advertisements compared to $2.4 million on digital iPhone ads.

In total, Apple spent $71.9 million on iPhone advertising through September and October, and $40.3 million on TV+ advertising during the same period. Of note, that data only includes television and online ads because billboard and outdoor advertising data was not available.

The New York Times notes that in comparison to Disney+, the Apple’s marketing blitz for TV+ has been “more muted.” This could be purposeful, as Apple TV+ debuted with a considerably smaller lineup of content than Disney+ will.

“Consumers are just drowning in content right now, and all of these services are competing for our time,” Dan Rayburn, an analyst with Frost & Sullivan said. “But they’re all approaching the market differently. This isn’t some race for Apple. It’s a slow roll.”

Meanwhile, Daniel Ives, an analyst with Wedbush Securities, said that Apple will need to be aggressive in marketing TV+ throughout the holidays, and into next year when it attempts to convert trial customers to paying customers:

“This is a pivotal juncture for Apple to be successful — they cannot trip over their shoelace,” Mr. Ives said. “They were late to the game, they’ve underinvested in content and they have a lot of room to make up.”


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