How Much Does a 30-Second Commercial Cost?

AMERICAN IDOL: Scotty McCreery and Lauren Alaina await the voting results during the season ten AMERICAN IDOL GRAND FINALE at the Nokia Theatre on Weds. May 25, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. CR: Michael Becker/FOX Photo: Michael Becker/FOX

It depends. If you want to buy an ad that airs during Sunday Night Football, prepare to shell out around $512,000. But if you're willing to slum it for an ad during Nikita, consider a spot yours for the low, low price of around $29,000. Ad Age's rough breakdown of commercial costs is fun to ponder — Idol ads cost $468,100 during the results show! — especially as it points to the value of shows not just in popularity but also in likelihood of being watched live. Take The Simpsons: It's not exactly the ratings powerhouse it once was, but it's still a top ten most-expensive show for advertisers, pulling in around $254,000 per spot. Monday's most expensive series for advertisers is Two and a Half Men ($252,000), Tuesday's is Glee ($267,000), Wednesday's and Thursday's are both X Factor ($320,000 and $283,000), poor Friday's is Blue Bloods ($76,000), and Saturday's is college football ($85,000). Time to start saving up that allowance money, kids. [Ad Age]