Standard Media Index Australia reveal the ad spend trends of May 2023

SMI - Standard Media Index

“These are huge swings that prove underlying ad demand remains stable for most media”

Standard Media Index (SMI) Australia has revealed the ad spend trends of May 2023.

Data from the index has found Australia’s ad market has started the new financial year in a positive manner, reporting underlying market growth of 0.1% in May 2023 when abnormal Government and Political Party ad spend is removed to eliminate the impact of last year’s Federal election.

Before that spend is excluded, the market is reporting a headline decline of 6.8%, but that includes a $41.2 million fall in Political Party category ad spend and a $12.4 million hit from Government advertising.

SMI AU/NZ managing director Jane Ractliffe said last year’s Federal election and the impact of last year’s ongoing COVID-related ad spending by Government had significantly affected advertising demand throughout 2023.

“SMI’s data quantifies the size of the abnormal impact the extra spending within these categories has had on our market, propelling it to record levels of ad spend last year but now creating a $153 million hole in ad spend since January which is affecting all major media,” she said.

“From a headline perspective, it changes a decline in calendar year-to-date ad demand from -4.2% to growth of 0.4% once the ad spend for those categories is removed.’”

Ractliffe said the impact of Government and Political Party ad spend was clearly evident when comparing the headline and underlying growth rates for most major media.

“Ad demand for both Radio and Magazines returns to growth when we remove the Government and Political Party categories, while Linear TV’s decline reduces from 15.3 to 3.5%. These are huge swings that prove underlying ad demand remains stable for most media,” Ractliffe said.

“And there’s another sign the market is returning to normal as SMI’s Forward Pacings data for June shows 87% of the value of last year’s June ad spend is already confirmed (ex Digital) and that’s back to levels we would normally expect to see in a growth market.”

In other developments, SMI last week relaunched our UK database with ad spend now from all six major holding groups and four large independent agencies.

“SMI’s UK pool now has more than GBP10 billion in annual ad spend, and is also a Digital-first market with Digital bookings already more than half of all media agency ad spend. Given the difficulties in finding accurate Digital insights the SMI UK database is a hugely valuable tool for all advertisers and other UK media stakeholders,” Ractliffe said.

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