Brexit? What Brexit? GroupM Declares UK Fastest-Growing Global Ad Market

GroupM is capping a series of upbeat upward forecasts among the big media agencies' research teams. Its number crunchers reckon the UK is the fastest-growing established advertising market in the world and will have its first GBP20bn advertising year in 2019. Yes, that is the very same year the UK leaves the EU.

The current year comes very close to that massive, round number with 6.1% growth (down on 6.4% growth last year) putting the overall market at GBP19.9bn, with 59% coming from online advertising. The researchers are clear that this is the driving force behind the figures that appear to be forever on the up and up. As you can imagine, this is signposted as good news for Facebook and Google.

In total, pure-play online advertising, as they call it, was up 15% last year and will rise more than 10% this year and above 8% in 2019. So we have the very familiar story of digital doing well.

However, there is good news for television. After dipping 2.4% las year, the Word Cup year of 2018 will see growth of 1.7% in 2018 and another forecast rise of 2%. There is a very similar increase due for outdoor and radio is set to hit 5% growth across next year and the year after. So broadcast and outdoor can be happy that they are getting their slice of new revenue.

Seasoned readers of MAD London will know what usually comes next as we show that for every up there is usually a down somewhere. As usual, it's print that is declining and regional newspapers tend to bear the brunt more than other subsector of print. Local papers were down 9% last year and will be down again by nearly 6% this year. It's a similar story for b2b magazines.

As for national newspapers, decreases will be limited to 4% and then just below 4% this year and next, so at least the losses are beginning to come down from nearer to 6% last year. 

In fact, the researchers make the point that print's losses have begun to flatten out as it stands out for its brand safety attributes and late book flexibility. 

So what is the big takeaway? Well, the Brexit word comes late down on their analysis summary, but only to say that despite the concerns over the UK's departure from the EU, the country is home to the fastest-growing developed advertising market in the world. 

it is worth noting, then, that in the year where the UK leaves the EU, 2019, GroupM predicts a record year for the UK advertising market as it hits GBP20bn for the first time. While we have a lot of doom and gloom and talk of falling off cliffs in the headlines, the forecasts emerging from adland seem altogether more positive. 

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