TV ad revenue, dark social, retail performance: 5 killer stats to start your week

We arm marketers with all the numbers and data they need to tackle the week ahead.

1. UK TV ad revenue totalled £5.1bn in 2018

TV advertising revenue in the UK reached £5.1bn last year, equalling the amount invested during 2017.

Online businesses remain the largest category of advertisers on TV, with the likes of Amazon increasing spend by 21% to £60m, making it the third biggest spender behind Procter & Gamble (£169m) and Reckitt Benckiser (£79m).

Collectively, online brands such as Google, Just Eat and Trivago invested more than £760m in TV advertising in 2018, up £47m year on year.

The top five biggest spending categories on TV are online businesses, followed by food £534m, cosmetics and personal care (£427m), entertainment and leisure (£380m) and finance (£378m).

Source: Thinkbox/Nielsen

2. ‘Dark channels’ are the most popular method of sharing content

Private messaging apps, known ‘dark social’, are the most popular for sharing content for 63% of consumers in the UK and US, followed by social media (54%), word of mouth (51%), SMS (48%) and email (37%).

Facebook Messenger is the most popular private messaging app to share content (82%), followed by WhatsApp (56%), direct message on Instagram (34%) and Snapchat (32%).

Consumers are also more likely to ‘be themselves’ (48%) when sharing content via private channels, compared to sharing something on a public news feed (13%).

Entertainment content, including music and film, is the category most likely to be shared across dark channels (51%), with games (48%), clothing (47%) and electronics (46%) coming close behind.

Source: We Are Social/GWI

3. Warm weather prompts strong online retail performance

February’s unexpectedly warm weather inspired a revival in online retail sales last month, with the industry recording its strongest growth in six months at 9.4% year on year.

Despite falling below the five-year average of 10.6% year-on-year growth for February, it provided some relief for online retailers after recent struggles.

The impact of the warm weather, including the hottest February day on record, was particularly reflected by the garden sector, which experienced 33.3% growth on the year prior. While health and beauty also built on its recent strong performance with a 13.4% increase for the month.

At the other end of the spectrum is gifts which experienced a 27.6% decline, as did electricals (down 15.4%) while clothing remained relatively flat at 0.9%.

Source: IMRG Capgemini eRetail Sales Index

4. Consumers rarely click on an ad to make a purchase

Only 2% of consumers globally click on an advert with the intention of making a purchase, with 56% saying they click on ads simply to find out more information.

Given information not purchases are driving clicks, consumers say they would like marketers to make more use of display ads (41%) and sponsored content (31%), rather than ads on voice platforms like Alexa and Google Home (0.5%).

Almost half (45%) wish to see fewer but more relevant and useful ads and 79% believe traditional advertising is alive and well.

Source: Conversant

5. European TV industry calls for urgent change to ad metrics

New initiatives for TV advertising measurement, data and metrics are urgently needed if the European TV industry is to remain competitive, according to 93% of industry executives.

The call for news metrics is in response to the decline of linear TV consumption, coupled with the rise of online video publishers and the transition of broadcast TV into multiplatform.

While the European TV industry has planned upgrades to help match these challenges, 72% of European TV executives believe the industry must seek new definitions and common principles for ad viewability, and another 64% believe standardised definitions for TV and video impressions must be developed.

Meanwhile, 72% believe the European TV industry must enrich TV Audience Measurement (TAM) with additional data sets beyond age and gender if the industry is to remain competitive, and create more personalised, targeted ad experiences.

Source: Adobe Advertising Cloud, Sky, TV Beat and Alphonso

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