Mobile Will Push Digital Ad Dollars Past TV by 2019

Forrester says interactive spending will hit $103 billion

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The "when" depends on which research you adhere to, but by nearly all accounts, digital advertising is going to overtake TV in the next five years.

Forrester Research today prognosticated that interactive spending will achieve a 12 percent compound annual growth rate and total $103 billion by 2019. The development is driven by huge gains for the search, display and social media niches (see stats below), though mobile is truly spearheading the change. The Cambridge, Mass., researcher found mobile advertising will account for 66 percent of growth across interactive categories in the next half decade.

Compared to digital, television will grow at a slower rate and rise to $85.8 billion during the same time, Forrester said. On the other hand, Magna Global predicted digital will account for more dollars spent than TV by 2017, and eMarketer recently said 2018 is the year when the media upheaval will be complete.

Below is Forrester's statistical breakout for how digital will expand by 2019.

  • Social media will see an 18 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) and hit $17 billion.
  • Display advertising will get a 13 percent CAGR and total $38 billion.
  • Search marketing will achieve a 10 percent CAGR while jumping to $45 billion.
  • E-mail will garner an 8 percent CAGR to $3 billion.

Meanwhile, Forrester said the current average number of dedicated digital marketing staffers among U.S. companies is 18, a number that will likely see a big lift in the coming years.

@Chris_Heine Christopher Heine is a New York-based editor and writer.