Interpublic Group’s Magna forecasts a 15.1% increase in 2021 U.S. media ad revenue, now expected to reach a record $259 billion. Magna says this represents the strongest ad revenue acceleration in 40 years.
The new forecast, an all-in tally including cyclical events (U.S. elections, Olympics), is significantly higher than Magna’s March forecast that predicted ad revenue growth of 6.4%.
The change is due to a better-than-expected start of the year and an increasingly strong economic outlook for the coming months, according to the report. Excluding cyclical events, Magna forecasts that U.S. ad revenue will rise 17.4%.
WPP’s GroupM last week released a forecast showing a similar trend. GroupM predicts 16.5% media ad revenue growth in the U.S when including political ads. GroupM’s forecast jumps to 22.3% revenue growth when factoring out political ads.
Globally, Magna predicts advertising spend will grow by 14% to $657 billion, a new all-time high, following a decline of 2.5% in 2020.
U.S. ad growth will be driven by digital advertising, which has been “red hot” since the second quarter of 2020, according to Magna’s report. U.S digital ad revenue will see 24% growth this year. This number includes “ad sales from all vendors, but pure digital players are going to grow a lot more (30% or more), while the digital ad sales of traditional media owners will grow more moderately (under 20%),” said Vincent Létang, executive VP-global market research at Magna and author of the report, told Ad Age.