Ad agencies are forecasting bullish growth in ad revenue in 2022 thanks to a greater-than-expected post-pandemic recovery period.
Even excluding what’s expected to be record-setting midterm election spending in the U.S., the worldwide advertising industry is still expected to enjoy better-than-anticipated growth in 2022 on the heels of what’s been an exceptionally robust revenue year to date, according to GroupM’s latest global end-of-year ad forecast.
The WPP-owned agency calculates that the international ad industry’s growth rate in 2021 will hit 22.5%, versus the 19.2% it previously predicted in June. Come next year, growth is forecasted to continue in the neighborhood of 9.7%, up from a prior forecast of 8.8%, with TV, digital, audio and out-of-home on track to account for $766 billion in total revenue.
“This may be one of the fastest growth rates in the history of advertising,” said Brian Wieser, GroupM’s global president of business intelligence, highlighting an intense post-pandemic recovery period that his mid-year global forecast seems to have underestimated.
“In June, I was worried that calling for 20% growth felt very aggressive. And now it turns out that was very conservative,” he said. “The absolute growth we’re talking about is unprecedented.”
Similarly, in Magna's new Global Ad Forecast, the Interpublic Group-owned agency is predicting a 22% worldwide growth in ad revenue this year—up significantly from the 15.1% it forecast in its June report—with the global ad market now 19% bigger than it was pre-pandemic and continuing to grow by at least 12% in 2022
Publicis Groupe’s Zenith also is predicting bullish revenue growth in 2022, suggesting that the global ad industry is on track to see at least 9.1% growth in the coming year, according to a new report. While slightly more conservative than GroupM’s 9.7% figure, it nonetheless reinforces the ad world’s recovery.
Accounting for a portion of this growth is digital media, which continues to enjoy the lion’s share of total ad dollars as more brands and publishers alike fill the space. In fact, GroupM data shows that digital advertising represented 64.5% of all global marketing in 2021, up from 60.5% in 2020; though more than three-quarters of that total comes from just three powerhouse advertisers: Alphabet, Meta and Amazon.