Traditional Media to Account for 60% of Local Ad Spending This Year

BY Kathy Crosett
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Earlier this year, BIA Advisory Services predicted at least 55.3% of marketers would maintain ad spending while 25.2% would increase spending. In the firm’s updated forecast this month, analysts say that ad spending in the local media marketplace will amount to $148.8 billion. At least 60% of that spending will come from traditional ad formats.

Here are the largest categories in local ad market spending for 2019.

Direct Mail

This format accounts for 25% of local ad spending or $37.2 billion. (Note that BIA’s data includes the cost of postage.) Businesses to spend on coupons, catalogs and newsletters figuring that consumers will respond to what they see in their mailboxes. Both national and local advertisers continue to invest in direct mail marketing.


With so many consumers staring at screens these days, advertisers must follow suit. Whether it’s over-​the-​air TV, online video or mobile video, consumers will be seeing your clients’ messages. This year, the OTA TV spending remains the dominant force in the $29.5 billion local video market. That figure amounts to 19.9% of the total.


Consumers continue to check out content wherever they are and whenever they want. Our mobile addiction is driving advertisers to spend $21.8 billion or 14.6% of the local market on this format. Keep in mind that national advertisers are the ones doing the heaviest spending on mobile.


When we’re not checking our phones, we’re looking at content via our tablets or computers. Advertisers know this. Your clients are buying digital advertising big time — to the tune of $20.2 billion or 13.6% of the local market. 

Local Radio

Consumers are still listening to OTA radio, but competition is growing. Radio stations are trying to boost their market share by rolling out online initiatives. Spending on local radio will be 9.8% of the total or $14.5 billion.

BIA analysts point out that significant spending by political advertisers won’t start in earnest until next year. However, the crowded field of contenders vying to be the Democratic nominee for president means that ad spending is likely to be robust.

The strong economy and the shift to mobile and social advertising will continue to drive ad spending this year. You can help your clients get a picture of where they stand in the local market by running a Digital Audit. The tool is available at AdMall from SalesFuel