Gambling ads could be banned from daytime TV to stop them being seen by children during football matches. At present, bookmakers and online operators are allowed to advertise on daytime television, provided the ads are for bingo or are aired during breaks in live sporting events.
However, the government is reportedly considering proposals to restrict betting ads on TV in its review into fixed-odds betting terminals. This would be significant for broadcasters such as Sky and BT Sport, whose football coverage attracts millions of pounds in revenue each year from betting ads.
In response, the two industries voiced their criticism as figures revealed that gambling firms’ spend on TV advertising has more than doubled since 2012, reaching £162m already this year. This year’s figure has been inflated by ads linked to the Euro 2016 football tournament. But with two and a half months of the year still to go, the figure far outstrips the £81m spent in 2012, the year of the last European Championships.
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With almost 50% of bookmakers advertising on TV, we certainly can’t expect them to go down without a fight and they will also have the full support of broadcasters who will be concerned about losing such a significant chunk of their income.
However, should the ban go ahead, it could open the door for other advertisers in various sectors to reach a young male audience during live sport at a lower cost. A key example would be Live Nissan Super Sunday on Sky Sports, which on an average weekend delivers around 3.0 for 16-34 male TVRs, therefore opening up a new opportunity to reach that elusive audience. We’ll keep an eye on how this develops and provide an update at a later date.