BIA Expects 2023 Local Ad Revenue Growth to be Flat Amid Inflation, Lack of Political

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CHANTILLY, Va.—BIA Advisory Services said today that it expects revenues across all media in the U.S. will reach $165.7 billion in 2023, a decline of 0.5% from the firm’s final estimate of $166.5 billion for 2022. Removing political advertising revenues from the estimate, BIA projects $165.2 billion in total local advertising next year, a 4.8% increase in local advertising year-over-year. The almost flat revenue projections for the year indicate continued economic and supply chain concerns, but BIA expects things to improve starting mid-2023. 

“This year has been filled with contrasting economic indicators creating several challenges for the local advertising marketplace,” said Nicole Ovadia, VP Forecasting & Analysis, BIA Advisory Services. “Supply chain issues continued to plague the first couple of quarters of 2022 making it difficult for local media sellers. In the summer, we had higher hopes for the remainder of the year; however, inflation issues and recession fears started to set in and that stalled anticipated rebounds in key verticals such as automotive.”

“For our 2023 forecast we lowered near-term expectations to reflect the current economic climate that we anticipate will stay with us into next year.”

The 2023 forecast shows digital continues to gain on traditional media, growing its share to 49% of the overall advertising spend at $81 billion, with traditional media ad revenue taking up 51% of the ad spend at $84 billion. BIA has been slightly decreasing its digital estimates over the last couple of forecasting rounds because of opt-in privacy measures on Apple and Android devices that have slightly impacted mobile advertising growth. 

The top three paid media channels for 2023 include direct mail ($37.2B), mobile ($33.5B), and PC/Laptop ($29.0B). BIA says direct mail’s growth has been slowing substantially and is expected to continue that pattern at +1.5% in 2023 due to rising costs and the continued growth across all digital channels. TV Digital, Over-the-Top (OTT), and Mobile will rise +17.3%, +12.3%, and +8.1% respectively, with TV digital growing from a smaller base than the other media. 

(Image credit: BIA Advisory Services)
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The business verticals that are expected to grow, according to BIA’s 2023 U.S. Local Advertising Forecast are: education (9.7%), retail (8.7%) and, restaurants (7.5%). Notable declining verticals include political (-78%), leisure and recreation (-4.9%) and real estate (-1.0%). The automotive vertical is projected to grow 4.9 percent, but not until the latter part of 2023.

“When it comes to advertising in the business vertical market, education offers a tremendous opportunity for local media in 2023, with companies offering opportunities for employees to improve their training and with people who are experiencing a job transition often enrolling in classes to advance their education,” said Ovadia. “For other verticals, too, I believe they will pop potentially faster if we see the Fed slow or stop raising interest rates, inflation tamed and a smaller than anticipated recession. Even with the economy in flux, the continuing strength of the labor market and corporate profits makes me feel confident that key verticals will show growth in the year ahead.”

BIA is hosting a public webinar, Top Recession-Proof Verticals for 2023, on Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 2 pm to examine opportunities for local sellers. Registration is free and can be watched on-demand after its airing using the same link. Plus, BIA’s Tom Buono, CEO & Founder, and Nicole Ovadia discuss top economic takeaways from the forecast on a Leading Local Insights Podcast. Listen here

For BIA clients, the company’s BIA ADVantage™ platform and MEDIA Access Pro™ database now contain the updated 2023 U.S. Local Advertising Forecast, which covers 16 media and 96 sub-verticals and includes comprehensive local television and local radio forecast updates and market profile data. To purchase access to BIA’s forecast data, email advantage@bia.com.

Tom Butts

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched digitalbroadcasting.com for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (www.tvtech.com), the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.