UK advertising spend is forecast to slow this year to 4.6%, with challenging times for direct mail and TV and even digital witnessing single-digital growth for the first time in a decade.
According to the latest Advertising Association/Warc Expenditure Report, adspend rose 5.1% year-on-year to reach £5.6bn in Q3 2018, marking the 21st consecutive quarter of market growth and the industry’s strongest third quarter of the year since 2015. Overall UK spend is set to grow by 6% in 2018, up from 4.3% in 2017.
However, this year the market is forecast to see a virtually flat year of growth for TV of 0.4%, while direct mail is forecast to decline by 8%.
Internet adspend, which accounts for over half of all UK spend, will grow by 9.8% this year, compared to 13.4% in 2018 and 14.3% in 2017. The last time Internet spend growth fell below 10% was in 2009, according to the AA.
Even so, these figures are based on a “business-favourable” outcome from the EU withdrawal agreement. A recent report by Enders Analysis claimed that a no-deal scenario would trigger a 3% decline in spend.
Stephen Woodford, chief executive at the Advertising Association, said: “UK advertising continues to perform strongly, now delivering its twenty-first straight quarter of growth and demonstrating the commitment of British advertisers to investing in the growth and success of their businesses
“As the clock ticks down to our departure from the EU, it is crucial the Government provides the certainty we are all seeking in business. We are predicting continued adspend growth of 4.6% in 2019 and an agreement with the EU that keeps disruption at a minimum and keeps trade and talent flowing will greatly help this growth. UK advertising is the best in the world and we need a deal that ensures we keep it that way.”
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