NEW YORK: Advertising expenditure in social media is growing around the world, but North America is growing particularly fast with advertisers there spending significantly more per user than those in any other region.

Data from insights provider eMarketer indicate that, in 2014, advertisers in North America will invest some $32.82 for every social network user, a 26% rise on the figure for 2013. Only the Middle East and Africa was forecast to grow faster, at 35%, but that was from a very low base of $0.37 per user.

These figures are based on paid advertising that appears on social sites, and does not include non-advertising marketing expenses such as creation of social content or maintenance of brand pages.

Western Europe was the only part of the world to even start to come close to the level of the leading region. Projected per user expenditure for 2014 was $13.71, less than half that seen in North America. And at 14%, its growth was also around half that of North America.

Despite the rapid growth of social media in Asia Pacific, adspend per user there was only expected to reach $3.60, a 7% rise. Then followed Central and Eastern Europe on $2.21 (+18%) and Latin America on $2.17 (+22%).

A broadly similar pattern is anticipated in 2015, with the Middle East and Africa continuing to be the fastest growing region, followed by North America and Western Europe.

When considering overall social media advertising expenditure, rather than per user figures, the Middle East and Africa remains the quickest growing part of the world, with rates of 63.9% forecast for 2014 and 52.4% for 2015.

On this metric, Latin America jumps into second spot, with growth rates for the next two years of 37.6% and 23.4%. North America is third with figures of 30.7% and 25.4%.

Then comes Central and Eastern Europe (29.0% and 22.2%), Asia Pacific (22.6% and 26.8%), while Western Europe brings up the rear (21.3% and 23.3%).

Data sourced from eMarketer; additional content by Warc staff