The top 100 TV advertisers represent at least 50% of the market, and the top 20 represent 25 major brand advertisers. Their advertising agencies seek to buy media placements from a large, diverse group of content creators and publishers in order to establish reach and frequency. The companies that spend the most money on advertising every year do it for a reason. They are not content to lose market share to the competition, and they have a specific branding that bends as needed to accomplish the message. We found the top 10 advertisers by spending, according to AdAge. Not only are they the top advertisers, they also may be top stocks to buy.
Procter & Gamble Co. (PG) should come as no surprise as the top spending advertiser. With a myriad of products, the company operates in five segments: Beauty, Grooming, Health Care, Fabric Care and Home Care, and Baby Care and Family Care. The Thomson/First Call price target for this top consumer stock is $87.50, and investors are paid a 3.0% dividend.
General Motors Co. (GM) is number two in advertising dollars spent, and has seen a sharp rebound in appreciation for American made automobile and trucks. The company had record sales in China for the month of July and are looking to expand their sales leadership to nine straight years there. The consensus price target for the stock is $45.
Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) is number three in spending and had an absolutely blow-out quarter. The cable giant got strong earnings from the newly acquired NBC Universal. The consensus price objective for the stock $51, and shareholders are paid a 1.7% dividend.
AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) come is in fourth place on advertising dollars placed. With the strength of the U-Verse content service and reasonably strong wireless, AT&T continues to post solid, if not spectacular earnings for shareholders. The consensus price target for the stock stands at $38. Shareholders are the recipients of a tremendous 5.0% dividend.
Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) come in in fifth place in advertising spending right behind its arch rival. The communications giant announced yesterday that it has received U.S. Food and Drug Administration 510(k) clearance for Converged Health Management, a cloud-based, remote patient-monitoring medical device. This marks the first time Verizon has sought and gained FDA clearance for a health care solution. The consensus price objective for the stock is at $55, with investors receiving a stellar 4.1% dividend.
Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) comes in in sixth place in the spending race. The company's F-150 truck is the most popular selling truck in America with 24 consecutive months of increasing sales. So popular, Ford had to add an additional 900 new hourly workers to meet the demand at their Kansas City assembly plant. The consensus target for the stock is at $19.50, and investors receive 2.3% dividend.
French cosmetic maker L’Oreal is a surprise entry at number 7. The company does not trade on an exchange in the U.S.
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. (JPM) is the eighth largest advertising spender. They may have more funds to spend on advertising if traders like the London whale, Bruno Iksil are kept away from company capital. Despite losing $6.2 billion in bad bets, Iksil found out yesterday no charges will be filed against him. The consensus price target for this top financial name is $63. Investors are paid a 2.7% dividend.
American Express Co. (AXP) is the ninth place finisher in the advertising spending ratings. The company was up about 30% in the first half of 2013, with the stock remaining at about that level after the company reported results roughly in line with expectations. Revenue net of interest expense grew by 4% last quarter compared with the second quarter of 2012. It is also one of Warren Buffett's top holdings. The consensus price objective stands at $78 and investors are paid a 1.2% dividend.
Toyota Motor Corp. (TM) rounds out the list of the top 10 advertisers based on actual spending. With popular top selling names and the luxury Lexus franchise still firing on all cylinders, Toyota continues to compete strong in the United States and around the world in total vehicle sales. The consensus price target for the stock is at $141.85. Investors are paid a 1% dividend.
While the top advertisers fall into familiar categories, investors could easily choose a stock from each group and have the beginnings of a diversified portfolio. It is also important to remember, companies that consistently advertise may be less likely to go out of business as the consumer is bombarded by their message.