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Advertising spend forecast for 2021

With ad spend forecasts, there is an assumed level of nuance taken into each report. Every business regardless of size has variable goals that are rarely comparable. Similarly for marketing agencies, financial projections can be challenging as tomorrow could be the day you land that “golden egg” client. 

With that front of mind, the numbers curated in the Statista report for Digital Advertising use various methods to collect information to offer an educated estimation of what we could see for 2021 up to 2025. Noted in this report for Canada is an annual increase of 10.4% to accumulate a total of $10.6 billion for 2021. One key takeaway is that “Search Advertising” trumps the list for what is projected to experience the highest investment growth of market volume of over $5 billion for 2021.

We saw a decline in advertising revenues in 2020 due to the cancellations of countless events, conferences, sporting events, concerts, promos, etc. As reported in the survey conducted by IPG Mediabrands’ Magna, Canada saw a decline of 6.4% in ad spend in 2020, but projects a rebound to a positive 5.8% growth in 2021. 

Canada holds a sentiment of optimism pushing past a challenging 2020. We could see a transformation in event ad spending going virtual, a big push in programmatic advertising, and multiple big brands placing higher precedence on search advertising this year. 

Where are all of the eyeballs?

Following the closures of many businesses across the board and a large proportion of recreational activities restricted from public access, there has been an upheaval of eyes focused on screens. Be it Netflix or Google, if society is directed to stay inside and not travel for non-essential reasons, it’s safe to say there are more people focusing their attention on their preferred websites than ever before.

Social Media

According to a survey conducted by GlobalWebIndex, they found that in July of 2020, social media saw a 10.5% rise in usage from 2019. It also shows that social media has now become the second most popular digital activity. For brands looking at capturing the best ROI on their marketing budget, social media will continue to be a big focus. 

study by the Statista Research Department titled “Digital Market Outlook”, projects that The mobile social media ad spend in Canada is expected to grow from 1.6 billion CAD in 2019 to 2.19 billion in 2024. The same research projects a 40 million dollar increase in desktop social media ad spend for 2021. 

While we as a global community are more sensitive to humor in advertising, it is crucial to tread lightly with creating content that has is both entertaining and educational. Research conducted by Kantar found that 38% of the respondents surveyed reported humor as inappropriate in advertising at this time.  

News Publications

An industry hurting at a time when viewership has risen to historical levels online. With around-the-clock updates related to pandemic restrictions and recommendations, more brands have the opportunity to pursue sponsored content and programmatic ad placements. 

Research conducted by Nielsen, reported a 215% difference in time spent online on mobile devices accessing current events and global news focused on March 2019 versus March 2020. According to new data undertaken by Totum Research noted in a post from News Media Canada, 33% have started reading more newspaper content since the start of the pandemic, and 43% intend to read as much after COVID-19 ends

While the digital world will continue to serve as the advertising medium of the future, it is becoming increasingly apparent that capturing the attention of audiences is becoming more and more competitive. Being aware of the forecasts and industry data can aid in informing brands on where to best focus their marketing efforts.