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From Celebrity Tweet Prices to Ad Rates: Let’s See What $100,000 Gets You in Advertising

So you want to promote a brand and have $100,000.  A hundred grand seems like a lot of money but you want to reach a national, even global market.   Let’s take a look at how you can spend it and what you’re going to get for that kind of money.

  • A Promoted Tweet on Twitter: Twitter just raised the price of a promoted trend from $60-70K to $100-120K.   With 200 million users and growing exponentially.  The promoted tweet/trending topics are averaging a 5% participation rate via retweets,clicking of links, or reply.  Compare that to a banner ad that averages .4%.  Eighty percent of the buyers of the promoted tweets have gone on to repurchase although Pepsi and Coke (which saw a 6% engagement rate) ended their program after one try.
  • A 30 Second National Television Ad but not a top 20 show: An average ad on prime time costs a little over a $100,000 but don’t expect to get a top ten show for this price.  A top ten show will probably cost you 3 times that.  That’s actually dropped 10% over the last year.  On cable you can 6 ads because a national spot goes for about $15K.
  • 1/3 Of a Page in Color in USA Today: You’ll have $10,000 left to play with as a third of a page costs $89,900.  If you want Friday’s you’re going to have to borrow a little. It’s going to cost you $109,700.  You’re not going to be able to afford Full Circulation rates unless you want to drop your ad size down to the “nobody can see it” size.
  • Advertise for a week on the right square on You are going to reach 1 million users each day and at a cost of $150 or so per 1000 views for the 336 X 280 spot on the right, if you had all the impressions you might make it through the week unless there was a big news story out.  Of course, they rotate the ads so you might make it through several weeks if there are enough ads in rotation.  I didn’t have exact rates but I used the CNN money rates and made an educated guess on rates based on the stats of
  • A month on a high profile billboard in Times Square: There is a reason Coke secures has secured a prime spot here for 80 at $4 million a year. Times Square billboards are considered one of the most valuable spots in the world.  With 500,000 people walk through Times Square every day you get a lot of people and a lot of attention.  Prices have dropped so you may be able to have a little cash left over.  Like you could always purchase a rotating billboard like IDN Tools did last year.
  • 10 Tweets from Kim Kardashian: And that might be down to less than 8 tweets as she often charges more for some clients. I’m guessing she’ll give you a bulk rate.  Celebrities with over 2 million followers are generally getting $5000 per tweet or less but the response rate varies greatly depending on the devotion of the fans.  You could save a little and get Lindsay Lohan for $2800.
  • A Kick Ass Domain Name: You could have a name like,, or  All in that $100,000 range.  A name that is yours forever and has resale value if all else fails.  A name that people that will be a landing page for all eternity. A location that reaches the entire Internet/World for all to see.  A site that can be updated or changed at all points in time with the click of a mouse.

You can see where I’m leading here.  While I’m not saying that a company should avoid advertising on a large scale stage. My point here is to show that today’s businesses are becoming more and more reliant on a strong Internet presence.  Compared to the high costs and response rates of national ads, the cost of a domain is a true bargain.

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13 Replies to “From Celebrity Tweet Prices to Ad Rates: Let’s See What $100,000 Gets You in Advertising”

  1. Take it one step further. For national advertisers that want to put out high quality television ads, it costs about $500,000 just to produce a quality 30 second spot. That’s $500k just to produce it, not to run it even a single time. It’s simply amazing that in 2011 there aren’t more national companies that realize it makes sense for them to buy quality domains that are relevant to their business.

  2. Great job Shane.

    A lot of people talk about the comparative costs of alternative forms of media advertising, but this is one of the first articles to literally lay down apples next to apples…

    I’m in the marketing biz, and I do want to show this article to a couple of my buddies. Mind if I ask your sources of data before I do? (Just a thought, you might want to append the sources to each paragraph for added credibility.)

    1. Bernard,

      I did try and link most of the data but I admit I stopped linking every single thing because it got to be a linkfest. The only part I had to make a guess is the rates as they weren’t published and I was too lazy to inquire. The rest was data that is “out there”. I’ll try and put the sources all at the bottom to make it credible.

  3. “Compared to the high costs and response rates of national ads, the cost of a domain is a true bargain.”

    And the ad you buy today cannot be sold to someone else at a future date.

    But you can sell your domain. 🙂

  4. Great post. What refrain advertisers to buy premium domains with their marketing budget is they want to promote their service/product NOW.
    The second point is they generally have their own brand to promote and don’t want dilute it advertising a generic. The last point is type-in traffic is ridiculous compared with the amount of traffic you get purchasing an ad campaign (let be honnest). Premium domains generally are only a solution for long term, and for a NEW service/product.

  5. Yes, domains and website advertising rates should be compared to comparable advertising rates via print, tv, radio, etc. One needs to look at metrics such as $/visitor/viewer but I believe domainers and website owners oftentimes have far more targeted traffic than competing advertisers. OK an ESPN workout program might be comparable to a fitness website as far as targeted viewers. But with print advertising I have seen how newspapers and free publications distributed in grocery stores, etc will have advertisers which are 25+ miles away. So it means they are telling their advertisers we distribute X thousand copies of our publication when in reality most of that reach is no use. I am not going to a mechanic, dentist, restaurant, hair salon, etc 25 miles from where I live. A geo website is likely to have more hyperlocal traffic.

  6. Thanks for the excellent article Shane. I have a friend who is a partner in a 100+ employee ad agency, and it was only 6 or 7 years ago that they put their clients on the internet. Long standing relationships die hard, and the agencies may feel like they’re not needed once they move clients to internet advertising.

  7. @Jeff TV ads don’t all cost $500,000.

    This is a wonderful post but no one in digital advertising would recommend any of those tactics unless the client specifically wanted it for that budget.

    You can do CPC based ads based on user interest for pretty cheap & run ads to acquire registrations to your site etc.
    I like domains but sometimes just a domain over using your budget for marketing is just not done.
    $10,000 ~ $20,000 for a great domain & $90,000 for marketing hopefully to stretch for a few months is more likely.

  8. @Olney I wasn’t referring to the cost of the ads to run. I was referring to the cost of developing the ads. There’s no question that you can create an ad very cheaply. But apparently the average cost to create a high quality 30 second television advertisement is about $500,000. I have seen that figure mentioned in several different places, but here is one:

  9. @Jeff yes I was talking creation.
    We can’t think a band with only $100,000 for marketing would look to use half a million. That’s for Global or national brands.

    This is more in line for what a band with that budget would look to do.
    Not exactly what I’d recommend to clients but it’s a bit real.

    With the world economy especially US right now they could probably fly the band to LA get a team to shoot it in one for less than $20,000 if they had to.

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