Total advertising expenditures climbed 4.2% in 2005 over the previous year, with Internet, Spanish-language TV and cable leading the way. Network and spot TV, however, lagged behind.
The hottest ad category last year was online, jumping 23.3%, followed by Spanish-language TV (up 16.9%) and cable (11%), according to a new report from Nielsen Monitor-Plus.
Network TV declined 1.5%, while spot TV in the top 100 DMAs was basically flat at 1% and off slightly in markets No.101 to 210, dipping 1.5% from the previous year.
Despite softness in automotive advertising that has plagued media companies, carmakers continued to be the top advertisers. Factory and dealer associations spent $13.7 billion in advertising last year, up 6.2% from the prior year. Local dealerships were the No. 2 spender, contributing $4.9 billion, but spending was down 2.3%.
Other top categories included prescription drugs/pharmaceutical, department stores and quick-service restaurants. Wireless telephone service providers posted the biggest increase in advertising, upping spending 16.1% last year to $3 billion.