Back to School 2017

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Back to School shopping is one of the biggest retail events of the year, second only to the winter holidays according to the National Retail Federation. With planned back to school spending expected to increase by 8% to $29.5 billion and 83% of consumers planning to spend the same or more than last year, this trend will continue in 2017. According to TVB’s 2017 Back to School analysis, school start dates vary from July 31st through the first week in September. Retailers can drive increased back to school consumer spending by using local broadcast television to geographically target shoppers based on these different start dates.

According to the NRF & TVB’s analysis, some major back to school insights are:

  • Planned back to school spending in 2017 is projected to be $29.5 billion, up 8% from 2016.
  • 83% of consumers plan to spend the same or more than last year on back to school shopping.
  • Broadcast television delivers back to school ratings & reach.
  • School start dates vary from market to market; the earliest start date is July 31st and latest start date is September 7th.
  • Most consumers shop three weeks to a month before school starts, indicating that advertising should start end of June or beginning of July.
  • Local TV allows advertisers to target geographically.
  • Broadcast TV delivers major back to school categories such as clothing, electronics, shoes, and school supplies.
  • Local TV stations provide one stop shopping for powerful broadcast TV and targeted digital initiatives through one coordinated sales entity.

Planned Back to School Spending


Source: NRF Monthly Consumer Survey A18+, July 2017

School Start Dates Vary from DMA to DMA


Source: TVB Analysis

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