NZ ad spend sees sixth consecutive month of double-digit growth, but its not all good news

The country’s media agency market continues to report strong double-digit growth in advertising demand in September despite the ongoing COVID lockdowns, with national marketer ad spend up 12.6 percent year-on-year to $91.1 million. 

The result represents the sixth consecutive month of double-digit growth in NZ ad spend and the 11th consecutive month of any growth in demand. As a result the local ad market is now reporting a 27.2 percent increase in the value of agency bookings over the first nine months of this year. 

Most major media delivered strong gains in September with ad spend to Radio up 23.1 percent, Digital ad demand grew by 19.5 percent, Newspaper demand lifted 12.8%, Cinema bookings grew 51 percent and Television ad send increased by 11 percent. 

But Outdoor ad spend finally succumbed to the ongoing COVID lockdown, with the total back 4.3 percent in September as its audiences diminished. 

SMI AU/NZ Managing Director Jane Ractliffe says the continued growth was promising with the SMI data showing the value of NZ ad spend is now 2.5 percent above that recorded over the same nine months in the pre-pandemic world of 2019. 

“Given the strength of the NZ ad market in 2019 off the back of the Rugby World Cup, it’s quite an achievement for the ad market to already be reporting higher ad revenues especially given the ongoing COVID lockdowns,” she says. 

“But we can see that compared to the first nine months of 2019 Digital ad spend is up 19.4 percent while TV spending is up 2.3%.”

However, Ractliffe said the lockdowns were having a dampening effect on the market as total ad spend for the month of September is 11.5 percent below that recorded in September 2019 despite strong growth in the Digital and Radio media. 

“The pandemic has clearly put more of a focus on the Digital and Radio media, as strong programmatic, search and social media gains has seen Digital bookings rise 18.5 percent above the September 2019 level while Radio ad spend is 13.9 percent higher than the same month two years ago,’’ she said. 

Key Product Category trends for September included a doubling of ad spend from the Other Financial Services category as the Buy Now/Pay Later market continues to grow, while Government ad spend continue to grow and this month lifted 26.3 percent year-on-year. 

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