Canadian ad spending dips for the first time in more than a year

SMI data shows that digital spending dipped 4% after 22 months of growth.

Standard Media Index has released the latest ad spend numbers for the Canadian market, showing the cross-media national brand ad investment declined for the first time this year.

After sixteen consecutive months of year-over-year growth, overall cross-platform spending was down 4% in June compared to the same month last year. The decline was the first time Canada has had negative year-over-year growth since Feb. 2021.

However, strength through the rest of the year means spending remains up 8% for the first half of 2022, with Q2 up 5%.

Digital spend was down 4% in June after 22 consecutive months of year-over-year growth, with first half growth at 6% and Q2 growth of 5%.

Although overall digital was down, several media-sub types still managed increased investment. Search was up 15%, digital print increased 28% and internet radio was up 10%. Social, however, was down 5%, contributing to the overall digital decline.

Digital’s share of overall spending in June was flat, remaining at 60%. Digital share was also flat for Q2 at 56%, but declined by one point to 55% in the first half.

Linear television ad spend declined 3% compared to June 2021, driven by drops in both specialty (1%) and conventional (6%). TV does still remain in a growth position for the first half of the year (9%) and Q2 (3%).

Linear TV held a 29% share of total cross-media spend in June 2022 (flat to last year), a 34% share in Q2 (a 1% decline) and a 36% share in the first half (a 1% increase).

OOH had another strong month in June and was up 4%. Though this has strengthened its year-over-year recovery, it has not yet reached 2019 pre-pandemic levels.

The top three spending categories in June, as they have been every month this year, were CPG, financial services and automotive. While CPG was the top spender, the ad spend was down -12% over last year.

Declines in CPG were due to household supplies being down 37%, alcoholic beverages dropping 33%, non-alcoholic beverages dropping 20% and food ad spend dropping 19%. However, personal care investment was up +36%. CPG ad investment held a 23% share of total cross-media spend in June, a -2.0% decline when compared to June 2021.

Financial services was the second-largest spending category group in June, showing growth of 31% over last year, with cross-media share growing to 14%. Automotive rounds out the top-three but still saw year over year declines, down by 26%. The category finished June with a 13% share, a 4% decline.