Digital Ads Overtake TV

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According to new data from MAGNA, published by Marketing Charts, digital has overtaken TV as the single largest U.S. advertising medium, as offline media still command a majority of ad sales in the U.S. And MAGNA’s forecast shows that it won’t be long before digital will exceed offline sales, perhaps as early as 2019.

Digital ad sales should amount to $84 billion this year, the report says. That would mark a substantial 16% rise from last year, which is in line with past trends, documented in revenue reports from the IAB.

More important is the trajectory of growth, says the report: offline ad sales are expected to decline by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.7% through 2022, while digital ad sales will enjoy an almost double-digit CAGR of 9.5% through the forecast period.

Applying those growth forecasts to the current estimated sizes means that by 2019, digital ad sales, at close to $101 billion, will have surpassed offline ad sales (~$93.5 billion), says the report. These figures exclude the influence of Political & Olympic (P&O) spending, which tends to benefit TV. However, the inclusion of P&O spending would still not change the base forecast of 2019 being the year that this threshold is met.

Digital vs Offline Ad Sales Forecast (Billion
YearDigital Ad SalesOffline Ad Sales (Inc. P&O)Offline Ad Sales (exc. P&O)
2017$84.0$101.3$100.9
201892.099.898.8
2019100.797.896.2
2020110.395.292.9
2021120.891.989.0
2022132.287.884.2
Data Source: MAGNA, Published on Marketing Charts.com, September 2017

Offline ad sales (CAGR) are represented by:

  • National TV (-1.1% excluding P&O)
  • Local TV (-2.6% excluding P&O)
  • Print (-17.2%)
  • Radio (-4.7%)
  • Out-of-home and cinema (+2.7%)

Mobile devices last year grew to account for the majority of US digital ad revenues for the first time, and should represent more than one-quarter (27%) of all US ad sales this year, per the forecast, the fastest-rising advertising medium of all outlined in the report, with a projected CAGR of 17.4% through the 5-year period ending in 2022.

Using the calculations as above, mobile ad sales would exceed $110 billion in 2022, roughly half of total ad spend including P&O ($220B) and more than half if excluding P&O (~$216B). The figures underline the ever-growing importance of digital and mobile advertising.

The study estimates that social will constitute 34.9% of digital ad sales this year, for a total of $22.1 billion. (For comparison, the IAB estimated that social ad revenues totaled $16.3 billion last year.) As the second-fastest growing advertising channel, with a projected CAGR of 14.2% through 2022, social advertising is predicted to be a $43 billion market by the end of the forecast period. Meaning almost one-third of all digital ad spend would be directed towards social media, and 1 in every 5 advertising dollars transacted in the US would be allocated to social media.

Email marketers are more interested in increasing conversions than in boosting sharing or growing their lists, details a new report from Ascend2 and its Research Partners. When it comes to optimizing conversions, personalization seems to be the belle of the ball, per the study.

Most Effective Email Marketing Tactics Used
Tactic% of Respondents
Message personalization50%
Meaningful call-to-action38%
List data segmentation37%
Testing and optimization35%
Social sharing33%
Mobile responsive design28%
Automated campaigns27%
Data Source: Ascend2 & Research Partners/Pub.MarketingCharts, Sep. 2017

For more information from Marketing Charts, please visit here.

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