Govt. ad spending slashed

The coalition government has frozen it’s £540m-a-year advertising budget ahead of big cuts.

The bulk of the 50 percent cut is expected to be made at the COI, the UK’s largest advertiser, who are responsible for most government marketing spending. Last year, around £211m was spent on radio and other traditional media.

A spokesman for the Cabinet office of the coalition government has said that all new advertising and marketing spending has been frozen until March 2011, with only essential campaigns allowed, such as armed forces.

The Cabinet Office spokesman pointed out that the COI would remain an important body, despite the cuts, not least because of the "benefits of leverage" that such consolidated media power can have on advertising discounts for campaigns.

Simon Redican, Managing Director, RAB, told "Radio remains well placed to remain an important part of the government's communications plans. Radio continues to attract hard to reach audiences and allows national government to speak at a local level. In addition, COI invest significantly in creativity which delivers excellent results for their campaigns. As the most cost efficient medium, we are confident that radio's strengths will be enhanced as budgets come under ever greater scrutiny."

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