Spending on Internet Ads Tops Big Three TV Networks for First Time

Spending on Internet Ads Tops Big Three TV Networks for First Time

Advertising revenue from Internet and digital ads beat that of broadcast TV for the first time ever in 2013, a new report shows.

Numbers compiled by PricewaterhouseCoopers found that digital sales hit an all time high of $42.8 billion in 2013. That is up 17 percent over 2012.

The big three networks brought in a lower $40.1 billion in revenue. Still, with cable revenue and broadcast added together–amounting to $74.5 billion–TV is still the advertising money leader.

Meanwhile, revenue for newspapers fell to $18 billion with radio close behind at $16.7 billion.

“The news that interactive has outperformed broadcast television should come as no surprise,” Randall Rothenberg, CEO of Interactive Advertising Bureau, said in a press release. “It speaks to the power that digital screens have in reaching and engaging audiences.”

Digital ads from web searches still led the digital advertising field making up 46 percent of the ads, but every category of digital advertising grew in 2013.

Still, the IAB press release also pointed out that we are in a period of “transition.”

“Our survey confirms that we are fully in transition to the post-desktop era,” said David Silverman, Partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers U.S. “Triple digit advertising revenue growth from mobile devices contrasted the more tepid 8 percent growth from traditional computer screens. This is simply a reflection of the change in how and where consumers are viewing their information–on the go!”

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com