After a strong finish to 2011, global ad spend continued to rise in the beginning of 2012: up 3.1 percent compared to the same period (Q1) last year. According to Nielsen’s quarterly Global AdView Pulse report, emerging markets like the Middle East and Africa saw double-digit increases while North America and Asia Pacific saw modest more gains of 2.1 and 1.7 percent, respectively. Overall global ad spend in Q1 2012 was $128 billion USD.
The Middle East and Africa was up 23.3 percent as advertisers turned to budding and stabilizing economies there. In particular, Egypt saw ad spend growth of 67 percent in Q1 following last year’s Arab Spring.
Ad spend in Europe declined slightly (1.4%), with countries most impacted by the recession seeing the biggest changes. Greece and Spain, for example, both saw significant declines, while France, Germany and Switzerland drew more ad dollars than last year. Europe was the only region to see a decrease in ad spend.
While ad spend increased only slightly in January compared to last year, the year-over-year change grew steadily in the subsequent months. By March 2012, global ad spend was 4.5 percent higher than a year earlier. Market conditions and political unrest in 2011 may have contributed to lower spending last year, and Nielsen will watch to see if these increases are sustained in Q2.
The external data sources for the other countries included in the report are: