UK advertising expenditure grew 5.9% during Q1 2018 to £5.7 billion, according to new data from the Advertising Association and WARC. The latest Expenditure Report reveals that the market grew for the 19th consecutive quarter and was 1.3 percentage points ahead of the forecast.
“Our latest advertising expenditure figures reflect the resilience of the wider UK economy, where consumer confidence is improved and the jobs market remains very strong,” explained Stephen Woodford, Chief Executive at the Advertising Association.
“UK advertising continues to show steady growth with more businesses investing more spend in advertising. This investment boosts company profits and overall GDP, creates more jobs and helps our media sector to continue to invest in the creative content and technology that the public values. If Government can secure a good outcome from the Brexit negotiations and introduce a business-friendly immigration policy, we should continue to see sustained UK market growth and continued export success for advertising.”
Search now makes up £3 in £10 spent on UK ads and spending on search ads has seen persistent growth since 2001.
Expenditure Report forecast summary
At the same time, display ad formats now account for under two-thirds of UK ad spend and rose 4.7% in Q1 2018. Meanwhile, ad spend on display formats jumped 6%.
James McDonald, Data Editor at WARC, added:
“The UK’s advertising market has now grown ahead of expectations in each of the last four quarters, and our projection for 2018 growth has been upgraded by a two percentage points since the start of the year on the back of sterling results across the media landscape.
“Online ad formats – particularly search and social media – continue to over perform, but traditional media are also proving their worth to advertisers. Notable among these are radio, TV, out of home and national newsbrands, with the latter carrying on from a good final quarter in 2017 to reverse a seven year downturn in display revenue.”
The report also found that Q1 2018 represented the strongest first quarter in the last three years. Print display ad revenue for national news brands was up for the first time in seven years. Meanwhile, radio grew at its strongest rate in four years (12.5%).