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India ad spend to grow at 12.5% in 2018: Dentsu Aegis

MUMBAI: Dentsu Aegis Network’s latest Ad Spend Forecasts, based on data received from 59 markets, puts global growth at 3.6% in 2018, up from 3.1% in 2017. India is forecast to grow by 12.5% in 2018, up from 9.6% in 2017.

Digital media spend is forecast to increase by 30% in 2018 with 43.6% growth in mobile spend, which will account for 47% of total digital spend in 2018. The advertising market in India is forecast to grow by a further 12.5% in 2019.

“2018 is expected to be a growth year considering the stabilisation post GST. Another driver of growth would be the fiscal policies of the government which are expected to be pro spending and supporting the middle-income groups. In India, the significant improvement in the availability of high-speed networks at a lower cost is making a huge impact on the efficiency metrics of digital media. This will continue and therefore will support the faster growth of Digital advertising,” said Dentsu Aegis Network India President Media Brands and Amplifi Kartik Iyer.

“As marketers, we need to be prepared to harness this change and maximise engagement with our customer and thereby deliver higher returns for our brands. As an agency group, DAN has overinvested in this area and today has the largest, most experienced group of companies which are harnessing this rapidly changing area.”

Asia Pacific ad spends growth is forecast to accelerate to +4.2% in 2018, up from +3.5% in 2017. The region is forecast to be the leading contributor to global ad spend growth in 2018, contributing 39.7%, US$8.1 billion of the total US$20.3 billion incremental global increase, led by markets China, Japan, India and the Philippines (see table below).

Events will play an important role in 2018, Winter Olympics, Commonwealth Games, Asian games and state elections are all expected to stimulate ad spend growth. However, a slowing of growth in markets like Australia and China can be attributed to multiple contributing factors such as a naturally maturing market, ad fraud and data accuracy issues on top of a general economic slowdown.

Within this context, digital media channels continue to disrupt ad spend in 2018:

  • Digital media channels will continue to power ad spend growth, growing globally by 12.6% in 2018, versus 15% in 2017, to reach $220.3 billion
  • Mobile will go from strength to strength, reaching US$121.1 billion having overtaken desktop as a share of total digital spend in 2017. Desktop will continue to lose global share (-1.5% since 2016), versus mobile’s gains (8.2% since 2016)
  • Digital overtakes TV, by a margin now exceeding previous forecasts. Digital ad spend will account for 38.3% share of total ad spend, TV 35.5%
  • Paid search accounts for the lion’s share (40%) of digital ad spend, with voice-activated devices helping to power its growth. Amazon’s Alexa app was the top app for Android and iPhone on Christmas Day 2017, with the company claiming its devices enjoyed the best holiday season yet
  • Video (24.5%) and social (23.5%) will also drive growth within digital ad spend, powered by smartphone take-up and mobile-video in particular
  • Programmatic spend will rise by 23% as established players and startups compete over ad tech

Commenting on the latest forecasts, Dentsu Aegis Network CEO Jerry Buhlmann said, “The latest ad spend forecasts show a market in transformation, but not recession. The challenge for brands is to navigate an uneven economic outlook alongside a rapidly evolving tech & innovation landscape. In many markets, disruptive innovation – from mobile, voice activation and new ad tech players – is still providing new sources of growth and we forecast this trend will continue into 2018.”

“Succeeding in this environment requires global consistency through appropriate platforms and systems, while also the flexibility and agility to work with a wider ecosystem of tech-enabled solutions. It demands a relentless focus on understanding the consumer, using data to reach real people, driving relevance, addressability, and business growth.

Dentsu Aegis Network Asia Pacific CEO Nick Waters said, “Asia Pacific continues to lead the growth in digital ad spend. With the region’s fast adoption of technology and innovation, there will be a substantial shift towards mobile and smart devices. As a result, mobile online video ads will be the main drivers of growth within digital ad spend across the region.”

“Data continues to be central to our business in Asia Pacific and with a better understanding of new technologies, structures, and models for business growth, agencies must help brands move from being disrupted to disruptor.”