The Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) has released its full report on the industry's revenue for 2012, as well as the fourth quarter of last year. Overall Q4 revenue grew by four percent to $4.349 billion, while total revenue for the year grew by one percent to $16.482 billion. This marks the third straight year of upward revenue momentum for the industry, while the four percent growth in Q4 was the largest growth in the past eight quarters.
"The resurgent Automotive industry and the closely-contested Presidential political race provided the main impetus for 2012’s positive Spot performance," stated RAB President/CEO Erica Farber. "Our medium also enjoyed strong increases in Q4 spending by advertisers in the key Communications and Financial Services categories."
In Q4 2012, spot revenue grew four percent to $3.75 billion, with digital revenue up 11 percent to $206 million. Off-air revenue fell by one percent to $393 million. For the full year, spot revenue grew one percent to $14.205. Digital revenue in 2012 was up by eight percent to $767 million, as off-air revenue grew by one percent to $1.51 billion.
"The continued stellar showing of the Digital sector – up 11 percent in Q4 and with an eight percent edge over 2011 full year – underscores the fact that the Radio industry is finding additional ways to monetize these streams and that advertisers are taking advantage of new platforms to reach our listeners," Farber added.
Automotive remained the biggest spender at radio once again, with 29 percent of the top five category spending coming from carmakers. TV/Networks/Cable, Communications and Restaurants were all tied with 18 percent, while the Financial industry made up the remaining 17 percent.