New Zealand’s media agency market spent $1.04 billion in the 2017/18 financial year according to Standard Media Index (SMI), bringing four years of consecutive financial growth to an end.
Across all media, radio, cinema and outdoor saw the greatest growth.
SMI collects media payment data directly from New Zealand’s major media agencies and the 2017/18 financial year results were down $4 million compared to the 2016/2017 financial year numbers. SMI pointing out a month of soft demand in June as a reason why.
Last year saw the British and Irish Lions tour, which abnormally inflated June's bookings.
Looking across the different media, this year TV was down 17.2 percent in June, while digital bookings were down 16.9 percent. Some media did report higher June ad spend, including radio up one percent, outdoor up 2.7 percent and cinema up 8.7 percent.
June’s numbers reflect the comparison of the 2017/2018 FY year results and those of 2016/2017 FY year. TV was down 1.2 percent, digital up 1.9 percent, outdoor up 6.8 percent and cinema up 8.7 percent.
The biggest growth was seen in newspaper news sites which was up 21.9 percent.
The biggest of those newspaper news sites are Stuff and NZHerald.co.nz and in May of this year, both appeared in the top 10 websites for New Zealand. According to Nielsen, Stuff was number six on the list while NZHerald.co.nz followed behind in eighth position. Both websites were back one position when compared to April 2017's numbers.
SMI Australia/New Zealand managing director Jane Ractliffe says looking at the media agency spend, it was a disappointing end to an otherwise strong year, in which New Zealand’s ad spend had been buoyed by numerous one-off events such as the election, the Rio Olympics, Commonwealth Games and the Fifa World Cup.
"If you look back across the past financial year, the New Zealand market has delivered higher bookings for six of the past 12 months but it was the last two months of May and June which really pulled the financial year market back as the total value of May ad bookings was back 6.2 percent and then of course in June the market fell 13.9 percent,’’ she says.
She points out there are positive signs in the market with outdoor media reporting strong growth and news media websites emerging as one of the strongest areas within digital media.
SMI believes this is due to the strength of the KPEX advertising exchange, which is enabling local publishers to establish premium value for their local programmatic inventory she says.
Meanwhile, social media sites are declining from an ad spend perspective, down 12.6 percent on the last financial year results. However, it is in step with other markets in the growth of the programmatic market where bookings grew 27 percent in the past year to now be the largest digital sector in New Zealand.
Beyond media, looking at the categories, it was the government category reporting the greatest decline in year-on-year ad spend, down 26.3 percent in June, followed by auto brand and banking categories down 20 percent and 24.3 percent respectively.
However, looking at the full 2017/2018 financial year, government saw one of the strongest gains, up 12.1 percent on the 2016/2017 year while banking was up 11.8 percent. The communications category was also up 12.1 percent when comparing the financial years.