Ad Spending Did Something in January That It Has Never Done Before

Feb 22, 2019  •  Post A Comment

The U.S. advertising market, for the first time since Standard Media Index began tracking it, started the year with a January decline, MediaPost reports.

“The U.S. advertising marketplace began 2019 on a down note, with the major agency holding companies reporting a 3% decline in January vs. the same month in 2018, according to a UBS analysis of ad-spending data compiled by Standard Media Index,” MediaPost reports. “UBS attributed the weak 2019 start to a couple of shifts in major TV event programming — the shift of two NCAA football semifinal games and the Grammy Awards telecast — out of January 2019, making for tougher comparisons with a January 2018 that included them.”

The January decline follows 12 consecutive months — and five consecutive quarters — of expansion, according to the UBS analysis, MediaPost notes.

“According to the U.S. Ad Market Tracker, a collaboration of SMI and MediaPost, there has never been a decline in January ad spending since the index began in January 2011,” MediaPost adds. “UBS’ analysis indicates it is likely all attributable to a weak TV ad-spending month, with TV ad volume declining 7% versus January 2018.”

In contrast, UBS reportedly determined that “pure play” digital media sources gained 9% in January vs. a year earlier.

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