'American Idol' still has TV's most expensive ad time

american-idol-judges-320.jpgRatings for "American Idol" dropped some last season, and the long-time face of the show, Simon Cowell, is gone. But it's still the priciest show on television for advertisers.

"Idol's" Tuesday broadcast, which averaged a little under 25 million viewers last season, is commanding better than $467,000 for a 30-second ad in the coming season. That's according to Advertising Age's annual survey of prime-time ad rates. The magazine gathered data from six media-buying firms and other sources from this season's upfront ad market to come up with its price estimates.

"Idol's" Tuesday ad rate is some $50,000 more than the next most expensive show, NBC's "Sunday Night Football" ($415,000). The "Idol" results show on Wednesday is pulling in a little over $400,000 for a 30-second spot.

FOX has five of the six most expensive shows in the survey, with "Glee" ($272,694 for the fall and higher for its "Idol"-adjacent spot in the spring), "Family Guy" ($259,289), "The Simpsons" ($253,170) and "House" ($226,180) joining "Idol" in raking in the bucks. "Family Guy" and "The Simpsons" don't have huge overall audiences -- they're averaging 9.3 million and 8.2 million viewers per week this fall -- but Ad Age notes that both shows draw high concentrations of young men, and advertisers are willing to pay a premium to reach them.

The rest of the top 10 in Ad Age's survey are "Grey's Anatomy" ($222,113), "The Office" ($213,617), "Desperate Housewives" ($210,064) and "Two and a Half Men" ($206,722). The priciest new show is CBS' sitcom "Mike & Molly," which follows "Men" on Monday nights and commands $189,160 for a 30-second ad.

The cheapest show for advertisers, by the way, is The CW's "Supernatural," where a 30-second spot can be had for the bargain price of $29,100.

Below are the most expensive shows for each night of the week in the fall, according to the survey.

Sunday: "Sunday Night Football" (NBC): $415,000 per 30-second ad

Monday: "House" (FOX): $226,180

Tuesday: "Glee" (FOX): $272,694

Wednesday: "Modern Family" (ABC): $193,635

Thursday: "Grey's Anatomy" (ABC): $222,113

Friday: "CSI: NY" (CBS): $84,355

Saturday: "Saturday Night College Football" (ABC): $97,198

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Photo credit: FOX

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