Five ad spending trends to watch for in 2017
Digital will outpace TV for the first time, according to two new forecasts
December 27, 2016
Next year digital will finally surpass television as the top ad spending medium.
It’s been coming for years, of course.
While traditional media has declined, online has been gaining, and next year will mark a significant shift in which digital in all its forms becomes dominant.
That’s according to the latest round of 2017 ad spending forecasts, which have been trickling out for the past week, as they do each December.
This is significant for three main reasons.
First, of course, it speaks to the strength of digital and more importantly mobile, which is seen as the future of the medium.
Zenith forecasts roughly half of digital spending, $34.6 billion, will come from mobile next year, and that will rise in coming years, driven by social media and video gains.
Second, it speaks to the waning strength of television. It’s still the No. 1 medium, at least until the end of the year, but it’s not growing.
And third, it’s a reminder that solutions need to be found for the many problems dogging digital (viewability, ad fraud, fake news and more come to mind).
“The promise of digital hinges upon accurate measurement and analytics,” notes Zenith in its forecast.
“As dollars move to digital, they need to be supported by the right framework to measure results — specifically consistent business impact such as incremental revenue versus other channels.”
In addition to digital outpacing TV, here are four other things to watch for in ad spending in the coming year.
2. Google and Facebook increase their digital dominance
The two giants now account for more than half of social and search spending, according to Magna. That’s incredible when you think about it, especially considering Facebook has been mired in controversy over advertising issues of late. Expect their dominance to grow.
3. Mobile video gets hot
Spending on mobile video will rise 77 percent next year, Zenith predicts, and by 2018 it will outpace desktop video spending.
4. Print ad spending falls even more sharply
The spending declines for print are not abating. In fact, they’ll get even worse next year, with newspapers and magazines combining for a 14 percent slide, according to Magna, compared to 10 percent this year.
5. Radio remains steady
While other traditional media suffer, radio has managed to avoid the big declines, in part because of its wide reach. It’s also making up for part of its terrestrial losses with digital gains, such as on internet radio and podcasts, which will both rise sharply in 2017.
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