Do people still look or listen to ads? Do they remember what they see? Is it worthwhile to spend money on traditional advertising methods such as radio, television, or magazine ads?
These and many other questions are answered in our look at advertising statistics that all small business owners should know.
We’ve taken a broad look at the world of advertising, including print, digital, television, and radio advertising, and discovered that for some business owners, advertising in traditional print and digital media provides a good ROI.
Winning Advertising Strategies
1. 86% of people still prefer consuming content (television, movies, music) supported by ads.
Maybe people just don’t want to spend on ad-free content, but the fact remains that people are still very willing to consume content supported by advertising revenue. Television commercials, ads on digital content, and ads on their favorite streaming music service are all still valuable, according to Nielsen research.
2. Baby products, pet products, & health & beauty aids produce the highest return on ad spend (ROS) at $3.71 (baby), $3.06 (pet), & $2.82 (HBA) for every $1 spent.
If you sell baby products, pet foods and accessories, or health and beauty aids, you’ll find your money well spent in a multichannel advertising strategy. According to NC Solutions, these segments produce the highest ROI or ROS on advertising. Still not convinced? The top three print advertisers are L’Oreal (health and beauty), Proctor and Gamble (baby products, health and beauty), and Pfizer (health).
3. Omnichannel advertising pays off with an 80% higher rate of store visits for local businesses.
Google’s marketing wizards discovered that an omnichannel strategy, which tries to reach shoppers no matter where they are searching for information about a local business, pays off. Running ads on multiple platforms such as digital, search ads, in-app ads, and more pushes people to see your store ads and eventually visit.
4. Digital advertising, led by virtual reality, will dominate ad strategies through 2022.
PWC’s global media spent report predicts that digital advertising will dominate all advertising strategies from now through 2022. Virtual reality, used in games like Pokémon Go and other gaming systems, will exceed 40% by 2022, according to the experts’ predictions. Some retailers are exploring virtual reality to allow customers to try on garments from home using VR systems, for example, or set up virtual rooms of furniture to “try before they buy.” Ads inserted into such systems appear at the moment a customer is likely to buy, making them a potentially effective form of advertising for retailers.
5. By 2022, digital advertising will account for 56.9% of the industry’s revenues.
The advertising industry continues to shift ad spend from traditional forms of advertising (print, direct mail) to digital (mobile, pay-per-click, email, etc.). By 2022, more than half of all ad spend in the entertainment and media segment will be on digital ads.
6. Magazines reached 1.8 billion people in 2018 across all channels.
People still read magazines, but the term “magazine” has expanded to encompass the traditional print journal, digital versions, social media presence, and even some blogs that function as digital magazines. Content-driven platforms included in the term “magazine” reached a total of 1.8 billion people worldwide, making it a powerful platform to generate mass market attention and brand awareness.
7. Magazine advertising provides the highest return on ad spent (RAS) of all print media, at $3.94 for every $1 spent on advertising.
According to the Magazine Publishers Association, a study conducted by Nielson Catalina Association finds that magazine advertisements drive sales at a rate of $3.94 of sales per every $1 spent on ads. Forbes interviewed industry experts who reiterated that far from being dead, print advertising, especially in magazines, continues to exert a strong influence. Luxury and lifestyle brands gain the most benefit from print advertising, according to some Forbes panel experts.
8. Combining print & television ads in one campaign improved purchase intent by 17%.
Intent to purchase reflects people’s desire or intentions to go out and buy products after they’ve seen an ad. Combination of print and television increased the intent to purchase a product by 17%.
Podcasting & Radio Advertising
9. 73 million people in the United States, or roughly 22% of the population, will listen to one or more podcasts monthly.
Podcasting offers advertisers an opportunity to run targeted audio ads to an eager demographic. Listeners tend to be young, affluent, and well educated, a boon for many advertisers seeking to reach this demographic.
10. 45% of podcast listeners have a household income of $75,000 or more.
These are folks with disposable income and easily identified interests based on their podcast listening habits, a combination that’s a marketers dream. You can find many niche hobbies and interests among podcasting fans. Knowing the demographics of your customers and pinpointing the right demographic for a podcasting campaign is the key to leveraging this powerful and growing advertising platform.
11. Radio reaches 93% of all consumers.
Radio reaches into every area of our lives. We listen to the radio in the car, while working, and while working out. It’s no wonder that Nielson reports that radio reaches 93% of all consumers. If you’re interested in getting started with radio advertising, read more with this Fit Small Business guide to radio advertising.
Outdoor Advertising: Promote with Billboards
12. Although all other forms of advertising are shifting in ad spend, outdoor advertising remains steady at 4.2%.
You’re driving on the highway and hungry for a bite to eat. You see a billboard for a national hamburger chain and realize there’s a location at the next exit. Congratulations, you’re among the 75% of travelers who responded to billboard advertising! While all other advertising channels are rising or declining in ad spend, billboards are the steady workhorse of the industry, providing reliable space ads for outdoor advertising.
13. Outdoor ads such as billboards generate $5.97 of product sales per $1 spent.
Outdoor ads aren’t just guiding people to tourist traps and fast food joints. They’re quite effective for products of all types, and generate a very strong return on ad spend.
14. Outdoor ads can go viral—Spotify reached 50 million people with a viral outdoor ad.
Clever, beautiful, or intriguing outdoor advertising can go viral in this age of Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat. Spotify, the online music streaming service, transformed the Broadway-Lafayette Street subway stop in New York City into a David Bowie tribute. An enormous portrait of the artist spanning beams over the stop captured the attention of an Instagrammer who shared an image. The outdoor ad, intended to drive traffic to Bowie’s music on Spotify and to the David Bowie Is exhibit at The Brooklyn Museum, was so eye-catching and astonishing that it became a viral hit. Spotify couldn’t have purchased that much visibility in an ad campaign; the cost would have been enormous. It proves that outdoor advertising can go viral in this age of blended and omnichannel advertising and communications.
15. 71% of digital billboard viewers think the ads stand out better on billboards than online.
The same ad displayed on a digital billboard garners more attention outdoors than it does online. Typical digital billboards rotate images every 8 seconds and do not vie for a viewer’s attention the same way that online ads do. And 82% of people who remember seeing a digital billboard recall its ads, according to Nielsen, which makes it a great potential outdoor advertising space.
The Bottom Line
Many business owners hesitate to spend on advertising. Their hesitation stems from not understanding which advertising channel offers the best ROI/ROS for their business. Armed with a better understanding of the industry and these advertising statistics, small business owners can spend their money wisely and with the confidence that they are doing their best to generate positive ROI.