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Outdoor Advertising Outperforms Other Media in 2001

Industry Reports Revenue Flat for Year-End

Washington, DC (March 12, 2002) ~

Despite a bruising fourth quarter in a year that most media companies would rather forget, the outdoor industry wrapped up 2001 whole with revenues holding flat over 2000 at $5.2 billion.

Year-end spending for outdoor advertising was down just 0.8%, while total advertising spending for 2001 dropped 9.8 percent to $94.3 billion, according to media research firm, Competitive Media Reporting (CMR).  Virtually every media was down significantly for the year. Hardest hit were national newspapers, down 23 percent to $2.94 billion; national spot radio, down 20.5 percent to $2.17 billion; and spot television, down 18.2 percent to $14.87 billion.

Outdoor performance across the top ten advertising categories fluctuated predictably with Local Services & Amusements remaining the number 1 spender (12.6% of total revenue).  Interestingly, the Public Transportation, Hotels & Resorts category actually posted gains of +16% for the year, though its 4th quarter performance was flat.

“Among the reasons for the resiliency of outdoor in a down market are the clear advantages it offers in pricing, innovation and market penetration, and its variety of attractive alternatives to other media,” said Diane Cimine, OAAA marketing spokeswoman.  “Outdoor communicates quickly, broadly and simply and the format choices make it suitable for a wide range of products and strategies.”

Essentially a local medium, outdoor provides brands with the flexibility to customize messages in ways national media cannot.  Outdoor drives sales and is likely to be the last cut made on an ad budget.

Looking ahead to 2002, the outdoor industry is cautiously optimistic, expecting modest gains over 2001, with 4th quarter showing the greatest improvement.


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