2016 was a milestone year for ad spending in France. Digital surpassed TV spend for the first time, with outlays driven upward by rapidly rising social media ad investment.
According to a report from Syndicat des Régies Internet (SRI) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), digital’s share of total media ad spending in France swelled to 29.6% in 2016, overtaking TV for the first time. Television did manage to increase its share, however, recording a less than 1 percentage point rise to 28.1%.
Most other traditional media channels suffered compared with 2015, SRI and PwC found. Print, directories and radio all saw their shares of overall ad spending in France shrink in 2016, while out-of-home advertising managed to inch upward by half a percentage point.
Digital’s surge was largely driven by social media ad spending, according to SRI and PwC. Outlays on display advertising in social media rose 62% to €453 million ($501.1 million), compared with a 3% drop in spending on nonsocial display ads. Increased investment boosted social’s share of total digital display ad spending in France to 38%, up 11 percentage points from 2015.
Social’s strength was even more apparent when looking at “traditional” digital display ad spending—formats such as banners and other non-video types. Social was responsible for 51% of traditional display ad spending in France in 2016, up from 41% in 2015, as investment expanded 33% to €336 million ($371.7 million).
Digital video advertising also strongly skewed toward social media efforts. Social’s share of digital video ad spending jumped from 8% in 2015 to 72% last year, according to SRI and PwC, as social video ad spending grew 351% to €117 million ($129.4 million).