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Oscars: Academy to Spend $5.5 Million to Push Telecast on Social Media

The Academy is slated to spend $5.5 million on advertising for the 2015 Academy Awards both on television and on social media sites Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, according to an advertising agency report.

The show’s presenter, Neil Patrick Harris, who only has 12.7 million Twitter followers, is not nearly as influential as last year’s host Ellen DeGeneres, who has a syndicated talk show and 37.3 million Twitter followers. This has the show’s producers worried that ratings will see a decline.

The ad barrage is also designed to help the telecast overcome other ratings perils. The Dec. 18 report by Haworth Marketing + Media, which was obtained by the Hollywood Reporter, said, “Predicted nominations focus on art films rather than major blockbusters that have mass appeal.”

The report also states that “counterprogramming may be a challenge,” because this year’s events will air in conjunction with AMC’s The Walking Dead, PBS’ Downtown Abbey, and HBO’s Lena Dunham show Girls.

The report goes on to say that marketers, who typically target female viewers, will be paying $1.9 million per 30 seconds, which is an increase from $1.8 million last year.

Last year, Ellen drew the best ratings for the struggling awards show in 14 years, leaving the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences ready to unveil the $5.5 million marketing plan to tempt viewers to tune in to ABC for the broadcast, which will air on Feb. 22.

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