JAKARTA: Advertising expenditure in Indonesia grew at over 7% in 2015, recovering from a decline in the early part of the year to finish strongly and only slightly slower than the previous year's growth.

New data from researcher Nielsen indicated that total spending for the year – based on gross rate card and not including digital – reached Rp 118 trillion ($8.77bn). The 7.27% increase for 2015 compared to an 8% rise in 2014.

The market had actually declined in the first part of the year before picking up in the third quarter, and Hellen Katherina, Nielsen Indonesia media executive director, said the strong growth seen in the fourth quarter was evidence of greater confidence among advertisers, the Jakarta Globe reported.

Several factors were at work: the economy expanded 5% in the final quarter of the year while simultaneous regional elections boosted ad spending by political parties and candidates.

Regional governments were also big spenders, especially those of East Kalimantan and Riau, with advertorial-style pieces on new or potential services particularly popular.

Nielsen further reported that advertising expenditure by government departments had grown 62%. The Manpower Ministry and the Ministry of Rural Developments had spent most – Rp 10.2bn each – but the most significant development was the Ministry of Tourism finding Rp 5.4bn to spend, a 2,627% increase on 2014.

If government bodies accounted for most of the volume of spending, then ads from online services showed "prominent growth", Nielsen reported. Spending from this sector was up 44% to Rp 3.51 trillion.

But even here, the totals spent by online marketplace Tokopedia (Rp 625.3bn) or online hotel/flight booking service Traveloka (Rp 697.3bn) were outweighed by two instant noodle brands from the consumer goods sector: Indomie spent Rp 971.2bn and Mie Sedaap Rp 733.7bn.

Overall, television accounted for the majority of spending, taking a 72% share of the total, with newspapers (26%) and magazines (3%) mopping up the remainder of those media measured by Nielsen.

For those print media however, spending was down – by 13% and 4% respectively – while television spending was up 12% to Rp 84.77 trillion.

Data sourced from Jakarta Globe; additional content by Warc staff