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TV Still Tops for Media Buyers; Digital/Video Rising Fast

28 Aug, 2013 By: Doug McPherson

CHICAGO – TV is still the most popular advertising tool for media buyers – but at its lowest level in three years – and digital is gaining fast, says a new survey from Strata, a media buying and selling software company.

The survey found TV remains the top ad medium, with 44 percent of survey respondents saying they are “more interested in advertising" on it. But this is the lowest score in three years.

Digital is now at 35 percent – up from 16 percent a year ago. Twenty-eight percent of those surveyed say advertisers will have greater spend on digital media platforms than traditional media in one to three years. About the same number – 27 percent – say they never expect to spend more on digital than traditional media.

Interest in video is at 61 percent – TV, cable, network and digital streaming – with 66 percent saying they’re more interested in online video than last year. YouTube is the top online video site for media agencies at 69 percent. Hulu is next at 35 percent, and Netflix and social media video site Vine are tied for third at 14 percent.

Other media continue to fall. Eighty-six percent of media buyers say clients were interested at the same level or less than last year in radio – the lowest rate of interest for radio in 19 quarters.

Forty-one percent of media executives say “client attraction” remains a main goal, with 21 percent pointing to client spending as the second biggest challenge. Media executives say the ad economy generally looks healthy – more than half of the agencies polled experienced an increase in business compared to this time last year.

In related news, eMarketer expects TV to continue to capture the largest share of paid ad spending in the U.S. for the foreseeable future, though its percentage of total spending will drop slightly, from 39.1 percent in 2012 to 38.8 percent this year and 38.2 percent in 2017, as spending on TV ads grows more slowly than spending on paid media as a whole.

Digital media will gain the most share during the forecast period, rising from 22.3 percent of total spending in 2012 to nearly a quarter this year and 31.1 percent by 2017. Mobile alone will grow ad spending even more quickly than digital as a whole; mobile is expected to account for 15.8 percent of all ad spending by 2017, or $31.1 billion.

Among digital formats, video remains the fastest-growing – though still from a small base compared to giants like search or banners. And even with the rapid rise of digital video viewership and ad spending, levels of spending on online and mobile video fall far below spending on TV. Even by 2017, eMarketer expects digital video spending to reach only around one-eighth of what is spent on television ads.

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