Google, Facebook, Microsoft Spent More Than Two-Thirds of 2016 Ad Dollars on TV
By Doug McPherson
NEW YORK — Google, Microsoft, and Facebook — three of the biggest internet/digital companies in the world — combined to spend more than 69 percent of their ad dollars on TV in 2016, according to a new report from Response research partner Kantar Media.
Providing more proof of the power of TV’s scale to drive consumers online, the three companies combined to spend more than $813 million on television as part of $1.18 billion in total media spending.
Google spent $260 million on TV in 2016 — up from nearly $180 million in the prior year and more than 74 percent of its total media spend of $350 million. That total TV spend was up from $232 million in 2015 and $227 million in 2014.
Microsoft spent $506 million on TV, up from $472 million in 2015. That total represents more than 67 percent of Microsoft’s $746 million in overall media spending (which was up from $700 million in 2015 and $617 million in 2014). As part of that, Microsoft-owned LinkedIn invested 80 percent of its $2.2 million TV ad expenditure — about $1.7 million — on a single ad during the Oscars.
Bing, Microsoft’s search engine, spent nearly $7.8 million in Google search during 2016 — up from $5.6 million in 2015, and nearly $3.9 million in 2014. Google buys advertising on Bing, but the numbers remain unknown.
Facebook had the highest uptick in the amount spent. As part of a 260-percent increase in total media spending (to $80.7 million), Facebook invested $47.5 million in television in 2016 — nearly 60 percent of its total.
About 64 percent of Facebook’s total — $51 million — was spent to promote Facebook Live, the company’s live streaming feature.
Among other social networks, Twitter is the only one that lowered advertising spending in 2016 — its $9.2 million investment represents a 70-percent dip compared with the previous year. Snapchat nearly doubled its ad spend to $3.2 million. Pinterest’s ad spend rose slightly to $2.1 million.