Mind the gaps: Discussing advertising’s growth prospects at AA Lead 2014

Joseph Clift

The idea that advertising makes a significant contribution to economic growth is widely shared by members of the industry. And this idea was given some statistical heft by a report released in 2013 by the Advertising Association (AA), a British trade body, in partnership with business services firm Deloitte. Advertising Pays argued that the industry contributes 7% of UK GDP, and that every £1 spent on advertising generates an average of £6 for the economy.

AA Lead 2014, organised by the industry body, offered a major update of this report, and reaffirmed the general vitality of the advertising sector. As Gavin Patterson, CEO of telecoms provider BT, put it in his introductory remarks: "[We have] proved that, if money makes the world go round, then advertising helps make the world go round. Advertising is not a happy coincidence of GDP growth – it helps stimulate GDP growth."