UK ad spend increased 6.3% in 2018

UK advertising spend rose 6.3% to £23.6 billion in 2018, marking the ninth consecutive year of growth, according to new data by the Advertising Association and WARC.

The latest Expenditure Report finds that ad spend grew 5.7% to £6.5 billion in Q4 2018 compared to the same quarter the previous year.

“These figures demonstrate, once again, the strength and resilience of the UK advertising industry during a time of political and economic uncertainty in the UK – they are a testament to the world-class capabilities of the third of a million people working in advertising and marketing services across the UK,” said Stephen Woodford, Chief Executive at the Advertising Association. “With every pound spent on advertising generating six pounds of GDP, a strong advertising industry is a key pillar of a strong economy.”

Ad spend is predicted to grow 4.8% in 2018 and another 5.5% in 2020.

Previous figures by the Advertising Association have shown that export of UK ad services reached a high of £6.9 billion.

“With further growth predicted for both 2019 and 2020, UK advertising looks set to deliver over a decade of continuous growth. Like all UK industries, we hope to see a positive resolution of the Brexit situation, with business-friendly data, immigration and trade outcomes that could further boost this forecast growth,” Woodford added.

The increase is predominantly driven by increased spending in paid search (up 14.3%), and online display advertising (up 21.4%). Both social and video formats performed particularly well within digital. Interestingly, online radio ad formats also saw notable growth of 30.6% whilst video on demand ad spend increased 29.4%.

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