The report also estimated ad spending in 2017 as Rs 61,263 crores, growing at 10%, as predicted by GroupM in February of last year.
Speaking on the report, CVL Srinivas, country manager, WPP India and CEO, GroupM South Asia said, “As consumer sentiment stabilises and spending increases, we estimate 2018 to be a relatively better year from an ad spend perspective. Growth in digital media will continue to outstrip other media but unlike most markets, India continues to see traditional media formats grow. After a couple of sluggish years, rural volumes are expected to pick up this year leading to increased marketing budgets.”
The report stated that continuing urbanisation and rising wages are supporting consumer growth in finance, durables, services and retail. India is witnessing an increase in spending from rural markets, as sales growth at 1.5-2.5x of urban sales growth for major FMCG and consumer durable companies.
Lakshmi Narasimhan, chief growth officer, GroupM South Asia said, “India remains one of the fastest growing ad markets globally, and is among the top five countries that are expected to drive incremental investment in 2018. Our growth percentage is three times that of the global adex and more than double of the APAC growth percentage.”
According to the report, the Digital adex will continue to grow by 30% in 2018. Video advertising will be a key component in the expenditure on digital and is estimated to grow at 54%, as bandwidth improves and data and mobility device become more economical for the consumer. He said, “The next phase of internet growth will come from video, voice and vernacular.”
On the traditional media front, print ad spends will see a marginal growth of 4%, taking a total share of 29% in total ad spends. The parliamentary elections in 2019 will stimulate advertising from the back half of 2018. Print will see a slight uptick in 2018 from the elections, with key markets in demand. The growth rate for newspapers is estimated at 4.2% with English papers growing slightly slower than Hindi and regional languages.
Television continues to be the largest medium, with its contribution remaining at close to 45% share. Whereas radio is expected to grow at 15% which is higher than the last couple of years, this is due to the launch of new radio stations across the country. The report states that other media such as OOH will witness good traction of 15% growth from premium transit sites.
In addition to this, at the press conference, GroupM also presented some of the media trends that will emerge in India in 2018. The common thread across the 2018 media trends is the digital platform, which is core to the growth of media in India.