Based on IAB UK figures, The Guardian is reporting that the Internet has now taken over from TV as the biggest advertising sector in the UK:
The UK has become the first major economy where advertisers spend more on internet advertising than on television advertising, with a record £1.75bn online spend in the first six months of the year.
The milestone marks a watershed for the embattled TV industry, the leading ad medium in the UK for almost half a century. It has taken the internet little more than a decade to become the biggest advertising sector in the UK.
UK advertisers spent £1.75bn on internet advertising in the six months to the end of June, a 4.6% year-on-year increase, according to a report by the Internet Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers. To put this in perspective, in 1998, when the IAB first measured internet advertising, just £19.4m was spent online.
Traditional media of all stripes have been pummeled by the twin bludgeons of recession and increasing demands for “accountability.” It’s only going to get worse for TV in the US in the coming period, as advertisers cut (but don’t eliminate) their TV spending.
However in the US market it’ll be some time before the Internet can equal, let alone surpass, the TV ad spend. Nonetheless, this is a kind of symbolic “watershed moment” for online.
Source: Robert Coen, MagnaGlobal; NAA; Radio Advertising Bureau; Simba; Outdoor Advertising Association of America; Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) other industry sources (2008)