Agencies Show Signs Of Confidence In 2023 Ad Spend, Survey Finds

Despite a year of economic woes and changing consumer interests, agency executives largely believe that ad budgets will hold strong in 2023, though that doesn’t come without projected shifts in spend.

CTV and YouTube seem to be two points of potential, according to the survey, which questioned executives at nearly 200 U.S. media agencies. Seventy-six percent of advertisers predict an increase in spend on CTV, compared to 20% who believe spend on the channel will maintain current totals and 4% who predict a spending decrease. Regarding YouTube, 55% of agencies predict an increase in spend while 42% believe spending will maintain current totals and 3% foresee a decrease. 

“This data reflects what we’re hearing from our big customers,” said David George, CEO of Pixability, in a release. “While overall spending may be flat or even down in places, CTV spending will be increasing, and YouTube will be playing an increasingly important role in CTV plans.”

Executives seem to have found a point of contention regarding whether or not YouTube belongs in a social media category versus falling under CTV. Though a majority of executives (57%) feel YouTube belongs in the CTV category, only 39% of agencies have a team that plans CTV, YouTube and TV ads from a single unified group. However, 50% report they will have a group like that in the near future. As felt by others in the industry, Linear TV is projected to see a spend decrease. 

Pixability’s survey findings echo a projection from the IAB that CTV ad spending would increase by more than 14% in 2023. In addition, Magna Global in September of this year predicted ad spending for video on demand (AVOD) was expected to increase by a third in 2023 to $6.3 billion, credited in part to new offerings from Netflix and Disney+.

Since that prediction, both those services have launched their ad-supported tiers, with Disney promoting that its service had already attracted more than 100 blue-chip brands and partnerships from all of the major advertising holding companies, including Dentsu, Havas, Horizon, IPG, Omnicom, Publicis, RPA, Stagwell and WPP. Having launched its first ad-supported subscription tier in November, Netflix is reportedly considering adding another level in the future.