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10 Takeaways from AdAge’s Leading National Advertisers 2019 Report

Whether we acknowledge it consciously or not, advertising is a phenomenon that is all around us—all the time. Driving to work, checking social media, watching TV—ads are everywhere in our daily lives. Though competition is stiff, there are some brands that come out on top when it comes to ad spending. Each year, AdAge releases a report revealing the United States’ biggest advertising spenders. The 64th edition, AdAge’s Leading National Advertisers 2019 Report showcases the top 200 advertising spenders in the nation. Here, we’ll look at some key highlights. 

The top 10 

We’re not going to try to list all 200 of the brands listed in AdAge’s Leading National Advertisers 2019 Report, but here’s a look at the top 10 (numbers reflect total U.S. ad spending 2018 in millions): 

  1. Comcast Corp; $6,122
  2. AT&T; $5,362
  3. Amazon; $4,470
  4. Procter & Gamble Co.; $4,305
  5. General Motors Co.; $3,139
  6. Walt Disney Co.; $3,132
  7. Charter Communications; $3,042
  8. Alphabet (Google); $2,960
  9. American Express Co.; $2,798
  10. Verizon Communications; $2,682

For the entire list, click here. 

Total spend has increased 

In total, the top 200 brands spent $163 billion in 2018. That’s a 3.6 percent increase over the previous year. 

Internet vs. retail

Internet ad spending topped $106 billion in 2018, which was a significant 15 percent increase over 2017. On the other hand, retail ad spending decreased 7.1 percent, rounding out at $15 billion total. 

Big spender 

Though it appears at number 100 on AdAge’s Leading National Advertisers 2019 report, Facebook experienced the biggest spending increase in 2018 of any advertiser on the list. The social media giant increased its ad spending 236 percent in 2018 to reach a total of $475 million. Among the top 200 advertisers, 125 increased their spending in 2018. 

Geckos making gains 

Based on that headline, can you guess which was the most-advertised brand in the U.S. in 2018? According to AdAge’s Leading National Advertisers 2019 Report, Geico was the most-advertised brand with $1.5 billion in U.S. measured-media spending. 

The king of household advertising 

Number four of the 200 top spenders is Procter & Gamble Co., headquartered in Cincinnati. Procter & Gamble was also the biggest household product advertiser, comprising 53 percent of that ad market in 2018. Procter & Gamble is responsible for brands like Tide, Downy, Crest, Luvs, Pampers, Bounty, Charmin, Pantene, Febreeze—the list goes on. 

Ride share rivals 

Uber ranked number 67 on the top 200 spenders list compared to Lyft’s 134. Uber spent approximately $701 million on U.S. advertising in 2018 and $1.3 billion worldwide—11.5 percent of its total revenue. Last year, Uber’s rival Lyft spent 16.3 percent of revenue on advertising. This year, its total U.S. ad append was $345 million. 

Streaming yields spending 

Streaming service Netflix ranked number 44 with its $1 billion spend in the United States in 2018 ($2.4 billion worldwide). The number marks a 70 percent increase over the previous year, making Netflix second to Facebook for overall spending increase. 

Taking it back to TV

Speaking of kicking back on the couch, TripAdvisor stands out on this year’s list for cutting its overall ad spending in 2018. Ranking number 160, the travel brand reduced the amount it was spending on online leads and increased its ad spending in the TV sector. 

Internet ad spending reigns supreme 

Among ad spend categories, internet came out on top at $92.4 billion in 2018, followed by TV ($68.2 billion) and then radio ($17.6 billion). Internet is expected to continue to dominate in the next few years, as it is projected to account for 53.3 percent of U.S. media ad spending in 2021. 

AdAge’s Leading National Advertisers 2019 Report not only gives us insight into what’s happened over the past year, but also helps to forecast where we’re heading in the ad industry. 

McNutt & Partners is a full-service advertising and digital marketing agency. Contact us today for your marketing needs! Call 334-521-1010, or visit our contact page. 

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