In total, the top 10 spent $4.4 billion on advertising, a 14.1% increase of $540 million year over year. More than 80% of this spending went toward TV ad buys, with six of the top 10 making “significant” buys for the Olympics – Proctor & Gamble, Comcast, General Motors, Pfizer, Berkshire Hathaway and AT&T. All but Proctor & Gamble increased year-over-year spending, with that company’s decline attributed to a pullback of its cosmetics and hair-care brands.
Kantar Media does not measure what portion of spending is funnelled through programmatic buying, though Swallen said the company is developing that research and conducting bench tests.
“We’re looking at ways to go deeper to be able to follow ads to the point of origin and to begin to identify programmatic ads,” Swallen said. “The market is increasingly interested in (programmatic), and we’re actively working to try to provide that data.”
On the surface, though, there may be indicators that programmatic spending is set to increase over the next year. The biggest advertising spender, Proctor & Gamble, accounted for $773.8 million in spending for the quarter and reportedly aims to buy 70-75% of its digital ads programmatically by the end of the year.