U.S. Digital Ad Revenues Surpass $100 Billion Mark for the First Time, Hitting Landmark $107.5 Billion in 2018, According to IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report

Record-Breaking Digital Marketing Spend Represents 22%
Year-Over-Year Growth

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–U.S. digital advertising revenues in 2018 reached an all-time historic
high of $107.5 billion—exceeding the $100 billion mark for the first
time—according to the latest IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report
released by IAB
and prepared by PwC US. This full-year 2018 total represents a 22
percent year-over-year increase from $88.3 billion in 2017.

Mobile and video continue to lead digital marketing’s steady growth.
Accounting for nearly two-thirds (65%) of 2018’s internet ad revenues,
mobile reached $69.9 billion, up 40 percent from the previous year at
$50.1 billion. Advertising revenues from digital video saw the largest
rise among all formats—an uptick of 37 percent—catapulting to $16.3
billion in 2018 from $11.9 billion in 2017.

The report analyzes the drivers behind the dramatic growth, identifying
that revenue stemming from eCommerce, including the emergence of the
direct brand economy, has played a key role. With the rise of “social
stories” as a tool to connect with today’s consumers, social media was
also pinpointed as motivating factor in significant investment—with
storytelling now catching fire across platforms and brands. In addition,
technological advances, ranging from virtual reality to voice to 5G,
were recognized as drivers and expected contributors to a continued
robust advertising environment.

Other highlights from the report include:

  • Digital video on mobile devices continued its momentum, reaching $10.2
    billion in full-year 2018, a 65% rise from full-year 2017 at $6.2
  • Digital video ad revenues on mobile devices comprised 63% of all
    digital video ad revenues in 2018, up from 52% in the prior year.
  • Digital audio advertising grew 23% to reach $2.3 billion, outpacing
    last year’s full-year revenue of $1.8 billion
  • Social media revenue rose to $29 billion in 2018, an increase of 31%
    from $22.1 billion in the previous year

“Surpassing $100 billion in annual revenue is a watershed moment for the
digital advertising ecosystem—one built on its power to build direct
relationships between brands and today’s consumers,” said Randall
Rothenberg, CEO, IAB. “Innovative platforms like over-the-top
television, podcasts, virtual reality, and augmented reality all have
the potential to help marketers forge even stronger ties with audiences,
as brands navigate the new ‘consumer first’ playing field.”

“Digital marketing has unequivocally secured the lead in media market
share, just as it has taken the lead in consumer mindshare,” said Anna
Bager, Executive Vice President of Industry Initiatives, IAB. “As
audiences have shifted away from traditional media, digital has been a
dominant force in capturing their attention—first from desktop to mobile
devices and more recently to connected TV, smart speakers, and digital

“Advertisers are placing a premium on mobile and video, and in turn the
two are fueling the ongoing rise of digital marketing,” said Sue Hogan,
Senior Vice President, Research and Measurement, IAB. “And the 5G
promise of lightning fast speed and decreased latency presents
opportunities for businesses and consumers alike: a smoother user
experience, which could further consumer ease with use and frequency of
ecommerce on small screens; and it would allow for greater innovation in
ad formats. As companies prepare for 5G—and its rollout gains
momentum—we can anticipate even more healthy digital growth.”

“Year after year, brands have been increasing their commitment to
digital as a primary channel to reach consumers,” said David Silverman,
Partner, PwC US. “The analysis in this report highlights important
drivers and trends that could influence interactive’s trajectory in the
years to come, as marketers look to new formats and technologies to help
them connect with consumers.”

IAB sponsors the IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report, which is
conducted independently by the New Media Group of PwC. The results are
considered a reasonable measurement of interactive advertising revenues
because the data is compiled directly from information supplied by
companies selling advertising on the internet. The survey includes data
concerning online advertising revenues from web sites, commercial online
services, free email providers, and all other companies selling online

PwC does not audit the information and provides no opinion or other form
of assurance with respect to the information. Past reports are available
at www.iab.com/adrevenuereport.

About PwC US

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About IAB

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) empowers the media and
marketing industries to thrive in the digital economy. Its membership is
comprised of more than 650 leading media and technology companies that
are responsible for selling, delivering, and optimizing digital
advertising or marketing campaigns. The trade group fields critical
research on interactive advertising, while also educating brands,
agencies, and the wider business community on the importance of digital
marketing. In affiliation with the IAB Tech Lab, it develops technical
standards and best practices. IAB and the IAB Education Foundation are
committed to professional development and elevating the knowledge,
skills, expertise, and diversity of the workforce across the industry.
Through the work of its public policy office in Washington, D.C., IAB
advocates for its members and promotes the value of the interactive
advertising industry to legislators and policymakers. Founded in 1996,
the IAB is headquartered in New York City and has a San Francisco office.


IAB Media Contact
Laura Goldberg

Media Contact

Natasha Mahapatro

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