Penchant for online slows, but continues to grow

The latest Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and PricewaterhouseCoopers Insight Report shows the total online ad spend in New Zealand for 2009 coming in at $213.89m, a 10 percent increase from 2008 ($193.15m). And, while this could be viewed as modest growth when compared to previous years, Michael Gregg, the IAB chairman, believes it demonstrates marketers’ confidence in online as a medium that delivers results when budgets were being cut on other media. “This shift to prudent, results-based, online advertising is anticipated to accelerate in 2010 with IAB and its members striving to provide ROI-driven campaigns no matter what the channel,” he says.

PricewaterhouseCoopers partner Chris Perree says: “The growth in spend is consistent with organisations focusing and recognising online advertising as a medium of choice. It also supports expectations of continued strong growth as businesses have generally been more cautiously optimistic about the future. This market trend is not only limited to New Zealand, but also to more mature markets, such as the United States and United Kingdom, where online advertising continues to command a greater portion of the advertising market.”

Search and Directories led the way with year on year growth of 31.64 percent in 2009. Display advertising grew 7.67 percent to $64.30m from $58.12m and accounted for 30 percent of all interactive spend in 2009. Classifieds decreased from $75.32m to $71.43m.

Alisa Higgins, IABNZ marketing manager, says the classifieds category really feels the effects of the economy, especially around employment and jobs advertised online.

“It’s great to see online job sites like Seek reporting an increase in the number of jobs being posted in 2010,” she says.

Internationally, ZenithOptimedia reports that the internet will continue to outgrow other ad media, increasing “its share of expenditure from 12.4 percent in 2009 to 16.2 percent in 2012.” A reassuring thought when elsewhere they have called the 10.2 percent global drop in 2009 “the worst decline in ad expenditures in modern times.”

However, they have added that the world’s ad market has now stabilised and will grow 0.9 percent in 2010, improving steadily to reach five percent growth in 2012.

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