PETALING JAYA: The country’s advertising expenditure (adex) got off to a good start in 2014 due partly to the Chinese New Year festivities.
January’s ad spend recorded a year-on-year growth of 18.4% to RM1.08bil from RM909.41mil previously, according to market research firm Nielsen.
Industry experts and observers said the growth was within expectations.
“This time last year, there was a bit of uncertainty due to the general election and many advertisers were cautious,” said an industry observer.
“On top of the better sentiment this year, adex last month was also boosted by Chinese New Year.”
The adex growth for January 2014 was led by cinema, which surged 91.4%, and pay-TV, which rose 40.3%.
Adex for free-to-air TV and newspapers, meanwhile, grew 10.2% and 7.8%, respectively. Outdoor advertising data was not available.
A media analyst said ad spend for traditional media, like TV and newspapers, remained stellar.
“It’s still considered a safe, if not proven, method of advertising. Many advertisers know that they can still reach their target audience effectively using these mediums,” he said.
The product/service categories with the highest ad spend last month were local government institutions, cinema and movie advertising, fast-food outlets, women’s facial care, haircare products and dental care products.
On the outlook for the year, OMD Malaysia managing director Margaret Lim said she was optimistic about adex growth.
“This year’s ad spend will be heightened by sporting events like the World Cup,” she said.
Another industry observer said he expected adex in 2014 to be also buoyed by Visit Malaysia Year (VMY) campaigns.
“Advertisers will definitely want to capitalise on the higher influx of tourists coming into the country this year,” he said.
Another media analyst said he was cautious about ad spend trends this year, noting, however, that significant sporting events would boost 2014 adex.
“If not for major events this year, such as the World Cup, Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and VMY, we expect a low-to-mid-single-digit adex growth. With the major events in 2014, we see ad spend growing more than 10%.”
According to Nielsen, total adex, excluding Internet and pay-TV ad spend, grew 3.1% to RM8.65bil last year from RM8.39bil in 2012.