Posted December 19, 2011 3:20 pm by with 2 comments

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Earlier this year, Kantar Media said they were cautiously optimistic about the future of the ad dollar. Now, they say that optimism has been replaced “by the statistical evidence of progressively slowing growth rates.”

Jon Swallen, SVP Research at Kantar Media North America lays it out for you,

“From +4.1 percent in the first quarter, to +2.8 percent in the second quarter and now a barely palpable +0.4 percent for the July to September period. During Q3, an expanding number of the largest marketers became even more conservative with their ad budgets and these reductions have neutralized the healthy spending growth occurring among mid-sized advertisers.”

Aw, that’s not good, is it?

Looking strictly at internet ad spending, it was a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul

Paid Search declined 14.4%, which Kantar says comes from reduced spending by insurance companies, legal and medical services. But Display is sitting pretty with a 15.8% increase in spending. What do you suppose that’s all about?

As for the rest of it, it’s kind of dismal. Spanish Language Magazines are still booming, but otherwise print is still hurting. Local radio is hanging in there and syndicated TV is doing well.

Deep Pockets

Who is behind all the spending? Automotive spent the most with $9,908.4 million. Local Services came in second with $7,144.2 million. The biggest percentage of change goes to Direct Response. They’re up 10.6 percent in Q3. That’s good news for all you insomniac shoppers.

Breaking it down by advertiser, Procter & Gamble spent $2,127.2 million, giving them the top slot. AT&T, General Motors and Comcast follow.

Here are the top ten, looking only at internet spend.

Add and subtract and in the end, internet spending is up. But I’m still wondering why Paid Search took such a dive. Any conspiracy theories you’d like to mention? I’m listening.

  • Cynthia,

    To me print advertising just is not what it used to be. I think most people do not need to look at any info in the paper like they used to. Most stuff is available on yahoo news and you can sell your stuff for free on craigslist. Business used to boom until all these resources became freely available online.


  • Hopefully the dip in paid just means advertisers are getting more savvy about their paid search spend… spending less and only on the keywords that produce for them. Maybe there are less competitors so cpc’s are lower, and therefore spend? Also, maybe more are also dipping their toes in the retargeting/contextual/behavioral/RTB side of display so that accounts for the growth in display. I still find paid search (for hot topic at least) to be a highly effective source of new visitor acquisition as well as being a key factor in closing orders.