Internet overtakes TV advertising

The UK's advertisers would rather spend their cash on online advertising than any other medium. No surprise there...

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 26 May 2016
Well – it was always going to happen sooner or later: online has finally overtaken telly as the medium advertisers would prefer to spend their cash on. According to a report compiled by the Internet Advertising Bureau and PriceWaterhouseCoopers, spend on internet advertising jumped by 14% during the first half of the year, bringing the total to £2.3bn, pushing up its share of the ads market to 27%. Not bad, for a medium that, in comparison to its older (although not necessarily wiser) rivals, is still at angsty teenager stage…

It looks like advertisers have finally spotted the potential of the 2.3bn videos watched every month in the UK: apparently, they forked out £45m on it - twice as much on video advertising as during the same period last year. That pushed up display advertising as a whole by 18.5% year-on-year, to £510m – which gave it a 23% share of the market in the process. Social media apparently also played a crucial role in that growth. Indeed: just last month, drinks giant Diageo alone committed to spending $10m on Facebook. As its users might say: OMG.

The paid-search marketing sector (ie. those little text ads that come up next to your search results) also thrived, growing by 12.6% to £1.3bn, giving it a very respectable 58% share of the market. With social media still growing, though, it’ll be interesting to see whether that continues: while advertisers have always appreciated paid search’s ability to be highly targeted and highly flexible; now that social media advertising is on the up, we wonder whether businesses will plump for that instead. After all, Facebook is a similar cost, but you can have a little picture, too…

What’s particularly interesting is the sorts of companies that are now switching from more traditional forms of advertising from online. Apparently, financial institutions are the biggest spenders (who’d have thought they’d be so technological and whizzy?), while the likes of Tesco, M&S, Ford and BSkyB have also apparently decided to transfer more of their marketing budget to online. Although whether that’s because they’re hedging their bets on a more measurable medium, or it’s just because they’ve just realised they’d better have a go at this interweb thingy, isn’t entirely clear…

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