US, Australia spend most on ads per person

23 November 2009

LONDON/WASHINGTON: The US is the biggest market in the world in terms of adspend per capita, followed by Australia and Austria rather than nations with higher overall expenditure, according to Warc's World Ad Trends.

These comparative country figures are based on Purchasing Power Parities, a system that uses the US dollar as a base point, and eliminates the different price levels between countries that typically result from currency conversion.

According to World Ad Trends, total advertising revenue levels in America reached $158.5 billion (€107.0bn; £96.2bn) in 2008, down by 6.3% year-on-year, with China on $57.1bn, up by 16.4% on an annual basis.

By contrast, figures in Japan were off by 4.5%, to $41.9bn, a decline that moderated to 0.2% in Germany, on $28.6bn, but rose to 3.2% in the UK, on $26.8bn.

Brazil, France, Italy, Canada and Australia made up the top ten by adspend, with values peaking at $20.9bn in the Latin American country, and falling to $11.2bn for the final member of this group.

When ranked in terms of Purchasing Power Parities, the US retained the top spot on this measure, with a PPP total of 158.5 billion in 2008, followed by Japan, on 37.2 billion, Germany, on 22.9 billion, the UK, on 22.2 billion, and France, on 12.8 billion.

Mexico was in sixth, on 11.9 billion, ahead of Italy and Canada, which both posted scores of over 10 billion, while Spain and Australia closed out the top ten, on 9.3 billion and 8.9 billion respectively.

In terms of adspend per capita, however, Australia climbed to second place, on a PPP total of 423.7, behind only the US, on 461.6 overall.

Austria was in third, on 405.9, with Ireland on 377.6, and the UK on 361.8, indicating that this metric provides a highly different insight compared with the raw spending figures.

By contrast, Japan was three places outside the top ten, on 292.5, with China not even making the top 25, leaving it behind much smaller nations like Greece and Finland.

Warc subscribers can access all the data from World Ad Trends here.

Data sourced from Warc