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US social media ad growth slowing – European digital ad spend grew 9.8%

Digital advertising spend in Europe increased by 9.8% last year to achieve a market value of €86bn. Despite the economic and political headwinds in Europe, €7.7bn was added to the digital advertising market total in 2022, according to IAB Europe’s AdEx Benchmark study. Market research firm Insider Intelligence says US social ad spending in 2023 will grow at its slowest pace yet.  

The US social ad spend has grown by at least 20% almost every year since 2008. That boom came to an end in 2022. And this year, social network ad spending will grow at its slowest pace yet, the company says in a forecast.

Turkey achieved the strongest total growth in digital ad spend in Europe of 93.3%, according to IAB Europe. The country’s very high inflation could at least partly explain the very high growth in the statistics.

The IAB annual study has removed Belarus and Russia and added Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, meaning the study now accounts for 29 European markets.

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“Brands are digitising their overall businesses to drive efficiencies and in the same vein are shifting advertising budgets into digital, says Daniel Knapp, chief economist at IAB Europe. 

“Thus, digital advertising in Europe has experienced robust growth despite the volatile macro environment. It reinforces the importance of digital for brands during a period of downturn due to its measurability and performance.”

The study shows that audio saw the largest growth across all formats in 2022 with a 22.1% increase to €0.7bn. 

Video also experienced significant growth with an increase of 13.6% to value the format investment at €18.3bn. Display grew by 9.5% to €40.1bn with search experiencing a 10.7% increase to €37.4bn. 

 Insider Intelligence announced it has slashed the forecasted 2023 US ad revenue estimates for almost every social platform:

Snapchat revised down by $505.2 million, TikTok down $649.0 million, and Twitter down $991.0 million. For Pinterest down $31.5 million and Reddit down $40.9 million, the cuts are smaller but still impactful—$40.9 million is nearly 10% of Reddit’s annual revenues, Insider Intelligence says.

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“YoY growth will be slower for every platform except Meta. Meta’s head start on fully automated ad products, such as Advantage+ Shopping Campaigns (ASC+), along with its unmatched scale plus some favourable comps, positioned the company to deliver better results than the ones it posted in 2022.”

“Rising inventory, lower CPMs, and new ad formats play a role. Social’s post-ATT (app tracking transparency) landscape required the platforms to rethink their ad formats and strategies. Those pivots have made advertising on social networks more affordable, contributing to the softer growth.”

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