Time Is on Your Side

Digital is the fuel for the ad future. That’s the conclusion of a GroupM study that found digital’s share of global ad dollars will hit 15 percent in 2009, up from 11 percent last year. The boom comes from money pouring into Internet, mobile and gaming ads.

Sure, we all know digital is white-hot; still, the growth is noteworthy given the general economic slump in the United States. Because even in the face of a weakening economy, brands are evidently willing to chase new media.

In fact, the uptick represents a doubling of the dollars spent on new media just four years ago. New media will be the main engine for all ad growth because traditional media sources will dip, GroupM says. The Internet has been the “principal source of media investment growth in western nations since 2001,” the report said.

But advertisers need to be smart, strategic and more creative than they have ever been. Because consumers aren’t simply tuning out TV, radio and print in favor of the Internet. Rather, they are simply squeezing more time online into their days with each passing year — 46 minutes per day online next year, up from 27 minutes in 2005 — but also multitasking as they do so. That means marketers need to work harder to capture a fractured attention span.

Digital ad spend probably won’t shrink in this lifetime. GroupM predicts the under-25 generation will carry its heavy online habits well into middle age and beyond.
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