By Charlene Weisler
eMarketer reports that in 2019, digital ad spending will not only grow a healthy +17.6% to $333.25 billion overall, it will also for the first time, represent over 50% of the total global ad spend. Interestingly, this digital pre-eminence comes at a time when total media and digital ad spending growth rates are weaker than they were in 2018.
But, according to eMarketer, this slower rate doesn’t represent a weakening economy. Instead, it means that the global ad market is in flux, adapting to new technology and overall change. “The advertising market is underperforming the economy, but we don’t think that’s because advertisers have stopped investing,” said Jonathan Barnard, head of forecasting at Zenith in the eMarketer report. “Instead, we think they’re investing in other areas like advertising technology, data and ecommerce.”
Digital Ad Spend (billions) % Change % Total Media Ad Spending
2018 $283.35 +21.4% 45.9%
2019 $333.35 +17.6% 50.1%
2020 $384.96 +15.5% 53.6%
2021 $435.83 +13.2% 56.6%
2022 $479.20 +10.0% 58.8%
2023 $517.51 + 8.0% 60.5%
Some countries such as China (69.5%), UK (66.4%), Norway (65.5%), Ireland (62.6%) and Denmark (61.1%) are already projected to be well above 50% in 2019 while the U.S., Russia and the Netherlands will all surpass 50% this year.
According to the report, Google is and will remain the largest digital ad seller in the world commanding 31.1% of worldwide ad spend ($103.73 billion), followed by Facebook ($67.37 billion) and Alibaba ($29.20 billion).
But it is not only about digital. Marketers are still very interested in traditional media and bringing all advertising components together in a more holistic way. Buyers as well as sellers are working on convergence measurement systems to provide better omni-platform measurement. In this way advertisers can better understand consumer behavior over all devices and enable more seamless storytelling and brand building.