UK ad spend hikes by 5.6% in Q3 2019


UK ad spend rose by 5.6 per cent year-on-year to reach £5.97billion in Q3 2019, marking the UK advertising industry’s 25th consecutive quarter of market growth.

The figures are contained in an advertising Association/WARC Expenditure Report, which is unique in its collection of advertising spends data from across the entire media landscape.

The figures have been published on the day that the Advertising Association’s LEAD summit for the UK’s ad industry has taken place at the QEII Conference Centre in Central London.

The latest data reveals that growth in the third quarter of 2019 was 0.8 percentage points ahead of forecast. Looking ahead to the full-year figures for 2019, UK ad spend is forecast to reach £24.8 billion, meaning the growth of 5.2 per cent. This is expected to rise a further 5.2 per cent in 2020 to reach £26.1billion.

Overall market growth is being driven by increased spend on online advertising, which saw percentage increases across every format. This was led by digital out of home which rose by 17.1 per cent, TV broadcaster VOD which saw a rise of 16.7 per cent and national online news brands which saw growth of 6.5 per cent.

The report also demonstrates particularly strong growth in Q3 2019 compared to the same quarter in 2018 in cinema advertising, which saw a very impressive rise of 46.5 per cent.

The impressive online figures reflect Advertising Pays 7: UK Advertising’s Digital Revolution report from industry’s think tank, Credos. The report, which was published last year, revealed that Britain is the largest online advertising marketplace in Europe and that the country has the highest per capita online retail spend in the G20.

Speaking on this development, Stephen Woodford, Chief Executive, Advertising Association said; “UK media spend has continued to perform strongly in Q3 2019, now on the twenty-fifth straight quarter of growth. The figures show ad spend increases across a range of media with digital formats and sectors continuing to drive growth.”

“These media spend figures are particularly impressive given this was a period of Brexit and political uncertainty and very low overall economic growth.

“As the Credos report on UK digital advertising showed, this is in part fuelled by the exceptional growth in SME spend in digital, as well as larger advertisers continuing to move budgets into digital formats in most media sectors.

“The projected growth for 2020 shows these trends continuing. With Brexit now a certainty, the industry’s focus now turns to the future relationship with the EU and the importance of this to the overall health of the economy, which underpins these media spend growth.”

James McDonald, Data Editor at WARC commented: “The UK’s ad market has sustained a 25-quarter period of expansion, but underlying data show that this growth is asymmetric – excluding online advertising, the UK’s ad market has contracted each quarter for the last four years. Online formats account for three in five pounds spent on advertising in the UK and we expect this to rise to two in three by mid-2021, fueling total market growth in tow.”

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