Survey: Agency biz the best this year since 2005

If this year was feeling more optimistic for the advertising business, it’s because 2014 is shaping up to be one of the best years since 2005, with increased business this quarter, more staff hiring plans and an increase in ad budgets.

Confidence in the ad business is the highest it’s been since 2008, according to a survey of ad agencies by Chicago-based Strata, a leading custom media buying and software company.

Sixty-two percent of agencies polled said they see business increasing this quarter compared to the same time last year, the highest level ever recorded in the history of the Strata survey.

More than half, 53%, projected future growth to be better in the first half of 2014 as compared to the last half of 2013, while 29% are increasing their ad budgets from last year, representing the highest level recorded by Strata since 2008.

Almost a third, or 32%, of agencies said they plan on hiring staff this year, while only 3% plan on reducing staff.

Advertising costs, were one of two top concerns, cited by 21% of agencies, were second only to client attraction at 37%. The third concern was client spent, 16%, trailed closely by media mix concerns at 15%.


Other key findings:

   * Facebook leads social media as 86% of agencies said they will likely use the platform in client campaigns, followed by YouTube,62%, Twitter, 57%, and LinkedIn, 38%.

   * 49% of advertisers are most likely to use Promoted Posts for their Facebook ad purchase, followed by Page Post ads, 27%.

   * YouTube is still the top online video site for advertisers at 76%, followed by Hulu, 34%.

   * 51% are more interested in streaming/online radio remains strong compared to last year.