Dealers aren’t spending less on marketing; they’re spending less on advertising. The result has been a “tough year” for anyone selling auto advertising.

A new report from Borrell Associates says total auto ad spending is on track to fall 7.3 percent this year to $34.4 billion. While it does expect that number to bounce back somewhat next year, the long-term prospects for broadcast TV suggest it may need to do more to diversify its client base beyond the local car dealership.