Canadian ad spend one of the fastest growing in 2021: report

Dentsu's Global Ad Spend Forecast report indicates an impending recovery for the Canadian ad market, and continued growth into 2022 driven by digital.
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Dentsu’s latest Global Ad Spend Forecast report indicates a stronger recovery than predicted in January of this year, with 10.4% positive growth in global ad spend for 2021, and Canada still poised to be one of the top three fastest growing markets, alongside Australia and the U.S.

More specifically, this year’s ad spend is expected to exceed 2019 pre-pandemic levels in Canada by 3.0%. Compared to 2021, year-over-year growth hit 14% in Canada (for a total spend of $10.5 billion USD), versus the 7.2% predicted by the Dentsu spend forecast back in January, with an increase of 9.2% predicted for fiscal 2022 (versus the 9.3% originally forecast in January this year).

According to the report, recovery is unsurprisingly driven by the return of COVID-impacted categories like travel and entertainment. Overall, digital will lead Canadian recovery with a 15.6% growth in digital spend, primarily in retail e-commerce and video, which represents a 59.7% share of spend that is expected to continue growing throughout the year. Full recovery of the Canadian ad market here is expected in 2021, before continuing with 9.2% market growth and $11.4 billion USD in ad spend in 2022.

Some key trends were highlighted at the global level, with digital growing 4% in 2020 and expected to return to double-digit growth this year (15.6%), continuing to drive the ad recovery with $311 billion USD in global ad spend.

With live sports resurfacing, the report forecasts linear TV growth by 7.1% in 2021, exceeding pre-pandemic levels in some key markets, but remaining behind pre-pandemic levels overall.

The Global Ad Spend Forecast also heralds the return of OOH as pandemic conditions ease and outdoor traffic grows in some markets. That, alongside continued innovations in delivery, reports a predicted increase in OOH spend of 14.6%.