UK and Australia lead the world in online advertising per capita


Techcrunch has just published a very interesting analysis of valuations of social networks. Here is its methodology:

Our model takes Comscore data for available countries and regions. We’ve graphed each of 26 well known social networks with the data we have been able to collect. We’ve then calculated the average advertising spend (estimated by PriceWaterhouseCoopers in a recent report ) for each person online in each of those countries. For example, in the U.S., the total 2008 estimated Internet advertising spend is $25.2 billion. We’ve divided that by the number of people online in the U.S. according to Comscore (191 million), to get an average Internet spend per person of $132.

I have charted the figures of interactive advertising spend per Internet user from this data below.


Source: Techcrunch, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Comscore

I haven’t looked at the PwC methodology, but presuming the raw data here is valid and comparable, this creates up some very interesting insights. The first question is why is the UK outspending other countries by so much, and why is Australia in second place?

I’ll think about and research this more, but some early speculation: UK’s advertising industry is probably more influential than in any other country, and has taken a strong lead in bring advertising into the online space. The BBC’s lead in digital content provision has helped not just to bring people online, but also to get them engaged in video and rich media. Australia’s online advertising space is dominated by the major media players more than almost any other developed country, and its advertising sales teams have been effective at both getting clients to advertise online, and to pay premium prices (compared to the many low cost advertising

Another interesting statistic is that Canada spends little more than half the US per capita in online advertising. Possibly US advertisers accessing the Canadian market are not accounted for in these figures. Canada was in fact the first country in the world where broadband overtook dial-up in number of users, in 2003.

Definitely interested in any insights anyone has into these statistics and the disparities between countries!

  • Rebecca

    Thanks Ross, this is very useful.