U.S. Ad Spend Growing Faster Than at Any Point Over the Past Decade

By Patrick Coffee Comment


As we head into the long weekend, one thing is clear despite ongoing debates about social media’s ability to drive sales, challenges in measuring networks like Vine, the competing agency and production studio models, the relative value of digital/traditional and the matter of whether individual ads are worth more on TV or streaming: advertising budgets will not go down anytime soon.

Today the ever-reliable eMarketer tells us that 2014 marks the single largest per-year increase in ad spending over the past decade–and the numbers will only continue to rise.

Some details after the jump.

First, it’s true that mobile and social are leading the way where this increase is concerned. Advertisers will spend 83% more on mobile/smartphone placements in 2014 than they did in 2013, which makes sense since research tells us that tablet ads work as well as those appearing in print. In fact, mobile will surpass newspapers in terms of influence by the end of the year.

No one forgot TV, though: overall boob tube spending will “only” rise 3.3%, but in terms of dollars that still makes it the second-fastest growing category around. After years of continuous growth, digital now accounts for 30% of all spending — and that number won’t decline anytime soon either. Online may well beat TV by 2018.

spending by share

The only area in which these guys see total dollar amounts decreasing is desktop advertising. Given the fact that we only use desktops in the office, it’s a bit of a no-brainer.

Digital ad spend

But again, despite whatever turmoil may exist within the industry, clients will continue to pour more money into media overall.

total spending

Even if eMarketer’s predictions don’t turn out to be 100% accurate, the industry’s revenues will rise no matter what sort of Next Big Thing “distruption” comes around over the next four years.

That fact alone must be worth a drink or three.