1. Facebook ad spend grows 62% despite Cambridge Analytica scandal
Facebook saw ad spend increase by 62% year on year in the first quarter of 2018, despite the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
In the week the news broke (17 March), spend was up 7% week over week. The following week (15 March) it was up 15%. Spend on Facebook-owned Instagram was also up, by 9% in both weeks.
However, Facebook’s growth was slightly behind the wider social media market, which saw spend increase by 65%, boosted by major sporting events including the Six Nations and Winter Olympics.
Snapchat saw spend increase by 234%, while Instagram was up 136%. Twitter experienced a 78% increase in ad spend and Snapchat 31% growth.
2. Consumer spending drop in March rounds off worst quarter for five years
Consumer spending fell by 2.1% year on year in March, meaning spend in the first quarter was down 1.4%, the worst performance since the fourth quarter of 2012.
Spend on the high street fell by 3% last month, with online spend down 1.2%, the first fall in 10 months and again the fastest rate since 2012.
Six of the eight spending categories recorded lower spending volumes compared to the same time last year, with the biggest reduction noted in transport & communication, which was down 8.6%.
Significant declines were also seen in household goods (-5.8%), recreation & culture (-5.6%) and clothing & footwear (-2.7%).
Food & drink was the best performing category in March, with spend up 5.7%.
Source: Visa UK
3. More than 80% of digital display ads will be bought programmatically this year
More than $46bn will be invested in programmatic advertising in the US this year, meaning over 80% of digital display ads will be bought via automated channels.
By 2020, that proportion will rise to 86.2%, with almost $19bn in additional ad spend is expected to enter the programmatic display space between 2018 and 2020.
In mobile, programmatic ad spending will reach $32.7bn, or 70.4% of all programmatic digital display outlays in the US this year, rising to almost 90% by 2020.
And more than 85% of all US native display ad dollars will transact programmatically.
4. Almost three quarters of marketers believe culture of measurement is killing creativity
Almost three quarters (72%) of marketers feel a culture of measurement is killing creativity.
A survey of 250 in-house marketing decision-makers reveals how demands from the executive team often complicate the task, with 64% saying senior management won’t support pure brand-building, and half of this subgroup saying they are directed to focus only on measurable activity.
Yet despite this, creativity is still part of the planning process. 32% of respondents listed structured creative thinking as what drives early campaign preparation, ahead of previous campaign (26%), or conversion data (25%).
When asked about their first action on receiving a project brief, 26% of marketers said they asked their teams to start planning the creative, while 25% tell their staff to look at the demographics and data.
5. Amazon is now the UK’s fifth largest retailer
Amazon is now the fifth biggest player in UK retail, with the online retail giant accounting for more than £4 of every £100 spent on retail in 2017.
Its retail revenue is estimated to have risen by 22.5% in 2017, while total online spend has climbed by 8.4%.
The company is not only stealing share from its UK competitors but is forecast to have accounted for 33.5% of all UK spend online in 2017 compared to 29.6% in 2016.
Tesco topped the table as the UK’s biggest retailer (12.5%) followed by Sainsbury’s (6.8%), ASDA (6.6%) and Morrisons (4.4%).
Source: Global Data