It’s official: all the hard work put in by art directors, copywriters and account managers at their online advertising agencies has paid off. US digital advertising revenue soared by 15.5% in 2012, leaping from 2011’s total of $31.7 billion to $36.6 billion.
The figures are contained in the annual report of the Interactive Agency Bureau (IAB) and, frankly, they make happy reading for the jobbing art director and account manager. Mobile revenue topped the growth league table with triple-digit expansion for the second year running, rocketing by 112.5% between 2011 and 2012 from $1.6 billion to $3.4 billion. In the space of a single year, mobile ads have almost doubled, bouncing from 5% of total US digital advertising in 2011 to 9.3% in 2012.
Art directors and account managers in the internet advertising category also have good reason to be slapping each other on the back, as it has now become the second largest advertising category behind broadcast TV – it overtook cable TV ad spending in 2011. David Silverman, a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, which helped put the report together, said: “When we look at it on a longer-term trajectory, the growth in overall advertising is really being fueled by overall internet spending.”
The rise of digital video
Revenue from digital video advertising was in rude health, too, surging by 27.8% on 2012 to hit $2.3 billion – up from £1.8 billion in 2011. The CEO and president of internet research and advisory firm Gridley & Company LLC, Linda Gridley, attributed the rise to the burgeoning uptake of smartphones and tablets, as well as to improvements in the quality and variety of digital videos. She also pointed to recent data revealing that 39% of advertisers’ budgets for digital video had been diverted from TV ad budgets in the first quarter of 2013.
Other trends in 2012 revealed in the IAB report include a robust increase in search ad revenue, which showed an annual jump of 14.2%, rising from $14.8 billion in 2011 to $16.9 billion last year. Meanwhile, display ad revenue rose by 9.1% from $11 billion to $12 billion in 2012, representing 32.8% of overall ad revenue.