The agency business has come roaring back, with strong revenue growth across disciplines and record-high U.S. ad agency employment.
U.S. revenue for agencies from all disciplines jumped 13.5% in 2021, the fastest growth in Ad Age’s annual Agency Report since 2000. Last year’s rebound followed a 6.8% drop in 2020, when fallout from COVID-19 pushed the economy and agencies into a deep but short downturn.
The revenue growth rate is based on Ad Age’s bottom-up analysis of stated organic growth for the biggest agency companies and stated or estimated growth for other agencies in Ad Age Agency Report 2022. Organic growth strips out acquisitions, divestitures and the effects of exchange rates.
Total 2021 U.S. revenue for the more than 300 agencies in this Agency Report came to $56.9 billion. Among those agencies, 85% delivered a 2021 revenue increase.