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eMarketer: Magazines to See Positive Ad Spending Growth in 2012

Newspapers not so lucky as declines continue

NEW YORK, NY (September 25, 2012)—Although both newspaper and magazine publishers are encouraged by positive trends in device adoption and consumer behavior, the continued growth of digital ad revenues has not yet made up for declines in print ad revenue for newspapers.

But it has for magazines.

According to new estimates from eMarketer, US ad revenue growth at magazines is expected to increase from 1.9% in 2011 to 2.6% this year, as revenue reaches $18.33 billion.

Print ad revenues at magazines will increase marginally to $15.19 billion in 2012 from $15.15 billion in 2011, according to eMarketer. In the same period, digital ad revenues are expected to grow to $3.14 billion from $2.72 billion.

The new forecast for 2012 US magazine ad revenue is marginally down from eMarketer’s previous estimate of $18.65 billion from January 2012—a result of slightly slower growth than previously expected.

At newspapers, the picture isn’t quite as rosy. US newspaper print ad revenues are expected to drop significantly in the coming years, slipping to $16.4 billion in 2016 from $19.14 billion in 2012. Digital revenues, which include all digital platforms, will edge up to $4 billion from $3.4 billion, so they will not cover losses from print.

eMarketer previously projected in January that US newspaper ad spending would reach $23.1 billion this year. The new forecast has been revised slightly downward based on faster-than-expected declines reported by eMarketer’s benchmark source, the Newspaper Association of America, for which the last full year measured was 2011. The newspaper figures include classifieds, national and retail advertisements.

eMarketer forms its estimates through an analysis of various elements related to the newspaper and magazine ad spending market, including macro-level economic conditions; historical trends of the advertising market; historical trends of each medium in relation to other media; reported revenues from major ad publishers; estimates from other research firms; consumer media consumption trends; and eMarketer interviews with executives at ad agencies, brands, media publishers and other industry leaders.

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Clark Fredricksen
Vice President, Communications, eMarketer
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Posted on September 25, 2012.