October 26, 2015 Last Updated 10:10 am

IAB: Internet ad revenues grew 19% in first half of 2015, far higher than Kantar’s report

Mobile ad revenues now accounts for 30 percent of total digital ad expenditures, rising 23 percent in the first half of the year

The week never goes by without some association forwarding a report that says their segment is growing at an astounding, and rarely believable rate. That last part, rarely believable rate, never used to be a problem because the numbers being compared could be looked at online and seen in their historical context. No longer, as some associations have abandoned the practice of posting some data online, or if it is still live, it is up to 12 months behind in reporting.

The IAB is in the enviable position of reporting on digital advertising, and the news is rarely bad.


The big recession put a dent in the growth of Internet advertising, but the slowdown was only temporary, and as you can see above, ad revenue continues to surge.

“Internet ad revenue growth is being driven further than ever before, as advertisers continue to invest in new ways to reach consumers,” said Sherrill Mane, Senior VP, Research, Analytics and Measurement, at the IAB. “Audiences have rapidly altered their media and purchasing habits and made digital media and mobile devices an integral part of their lives.”

That Internet advertising grew 19 percent in the first half of 2015 is impressive, but that since 2008 only one year (2011) saw a higher growth rate than this year. 2009, but the way, as the one year where they numbers were negative, as the US economy was very much suffering from the fiscal crisis of the previous fall.

digital-ad-revenues-surge-804Of course, like companies like Apple, the IAB is dealing with the tyranny of big numbers. From 1997 to 2000, Internet advertising more than doubled the previous year. There was a decline in 2001 and 2002 as the economy ground to a halt following 9/11, of course. But after that one can track the numbers and see the growth, thanks to the IAB’s reports.

These numbers concerning Internet advertising, need to be compared to other reports, including those that look at overall advertising, to see if they can hold up.

According to Kantar Media, overall ad spending in the US is down 3.9 percent for the first half of 2015. But Kantar has digital online display is down 7 percent, according to Kantar.

The numbers don’t exactly jive, but at least one can see them, compare them, debate them, and ultimately track them over time.

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