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31 January 2019

AA: Local Media Digital Fastest Growing Ad Category

Adspend on local media’s digital platforms grew faster than any other category in 2018, according to the latest Advertising Association/Warc ad expenditure report.

The moving annual total for local media in digital grew by 16.7 per cent in quarter three 2018, faster than any other category measured for the AA/Warc report.

Internet pureplay, mainly Google and Facebook, was the second fastest, growing by 15.2 per cent year-on-year, followed by national newsbrands (8.6 per cent) and national radio (6.5 per cent).  

Although local newsbrands in digital were the fastest growing category, the total amount of revenue they took was dwarfed by the tech giants.

Internet pureplay took 50 times more revenue than local newsbrands in digital, topping £11 billion in the year to quarter three 2017.  

The News Media Association has highlighted the unfairness of the current digital environment which has seen the tech giants reap the commercial rewards of content produced by others.

Today, Facebook reported its fourth-quarter results which beat forecasts and showed their profit rose to $6.9 billion from $4.3 billion in the same period a year before, as revenue climbed to $16.9 billion from $13 billion.

Debra Aho Williamson, an analyst at Emarketer, a research company, said: “Facebook has clearly demonstrated that the challenges of 2018 have not had a lasting impact. Advertisers are clearly still very reliant on Facebook.” Emarketer estimates that Facebook will control 20.5 per cent of the $327 billion digital advertising market this year.