U.S. Ad Spending Through Q3 2008 Dips 0.6%

U.S. Ad Spending Through Q3 2008 Dips 0.6%

Third quarter data released Thursday by Nielsen showed a small decline in ad spending from January to September of this year.

Overall ad spending dropped 0.6% in the first nine months of 2008, compared to the same time period in 2007. 

The drop came despite overall growth in TV advertising.  Four of the top-five growing media were TV-based.

The top three ad spending industries — Automotive (-8%), Pharmaceutical (-4%), and Local Auto Dealerships (-3%) — all decreased their advertising, compared to last year.  The remaining top ten industries either showed increased or flat ad spending.  Direct Response Products, which increased ad spending by 27% in 2008, showed the largest growth.

During the first three quarters of 2008, Procter & Gamble continued to outspend all other advertisers, despite reducing its ad spending by 7% — to $2.3 billion — vs. the same time period last year.  General Motors and AT&T were the second and third largest advertisers, with $1.7 billion and $1.3 billion in ad spending, respectively.

View the press release.

Read coverage of Nielsen’s findings by the Associated Press and in Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News, The Hollywood Reporter, Adweek, and Media Life.