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Ad spending growth slightly rebounds in first half

Martin Guo

Editor-in-Chief, Kantar China Insights

TV & Movie 07.08.2017 / 12:00

TV sets in Great Wall 2 col

Growth of ad spending in China shows a slight rebound in the first half of this year as the decline of traditional media advertising revenue stabilises.

In the first half of 2017, total ad spending in China increased by 0.4% from a year ago, a slight increase from the 0.1% growth recorded in the first half of 2016, according to CTR Media Intelligence data.

Across all media types, TV and print media of traditional media were still in downward spirals. But radio enjoyed a healthy growth in this period, which was even faster than a year ago. With the bust of Chinese cinema box revenue boom, the once skyrocketing growth of cinema pre-roll ad has also vanished. The performances of screen in lifts, poster in lifts and Internet ads were stable.



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The total ad spending on traditional media shrank by 4.1% from a year ago. However, it is already the best performance in recent two years, indicating that the market has stabilised. Big advertisers are getting more important in the traditional media sector: top 20 manufacturers accounted for 28.4% of the total ad spending, while top 20 brands accounted for 20.0% of the total expenditure. Moreover, Chinese brands continued to expand their share and influence in the market.



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Ad spending on TV was down by 3.6% in the first half of 2017, in line with the situation a year ago (-3.8%). China Central TV Station is undoubtedly the best-performing TV station with a strong 35.5% jump, while the ad spending at many lower-level TV stations were declining at rates faster than a year ago, except for that of provincial capital cities’ TV stations.



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Among the five biggest TV ad buying industries, only health and well-being and alcoholic industries increased their budgets. Six out of top 10 TV ad buying brands were from the health and well-being industry.



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Radio is the only traditional media format that has managed to increase its ad revenue: it grew 9.2% from a year ago, much faster than the growth rate of 2.9% a year earlier. Among the top 5 ad buying industries, No.5 food industry dramatically boosted its spending by 78.8%, more than tripling the growth rate of 23.2% a year ago. But the top 10 biggest buying brands were still dominated by telecommunications, transportation and financial industries.



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Print media were still in downward spirals in the first half, albeit decreasing at slower speeds. Ad spending in newspaper shrank by 30.5% in the first half this year, 11 percentage points slower than a year ago. That for magazines eased to -23.4% in the first half from -28.6% the same period of time in 2016.

After Internet companies and mobile operators cut their spending in out-of-home media, traditional OOH ad revenue slid by 2.7% from a year ago, but that was better than -3.6% a year ago. The performance of ad spending on screen in lifts (+18.9%) and poster in lifts (+10.0%) were stable.

The bust of China’s cinema revenue box boom has significantly affected the once sizzling growth of ad spending in cinema pre-roll ad: it was only 19.0% in the first half of 2017, much slower than 77.1% a year ago. Despite that, many brands continued to largely increase ad spending in this channel, such as social app Momo, cosmetics company Hanhoo and Pepsi.

Source: CTR

Editor's notes

* For detailed definition of ad spending volume, please check the Chinese version article.

* To know more information, data and analysis of China's advertising market, please contact us.

* Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive news alerts.

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Growth of ad spending in China shows a slight rebound in the first half of this year as the decline of traditional media advertising revenue stabilises.

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