THE IRISH advertising industry will return to growth this year, according to new forecasts, albeit at a modest pace. Advertising business GroupM has estimated that the sector will grow by 1pc this year, after five consecutive years of contraction. This growth should give the market a net valuation of €735m by the end of the year.
Digital advertising, it found, will see the biggest growth rate. That medium should growth of 10pc, giving it a 21pc share of the overall advertising market (€153m). Television will increase 6pc to €181m, while others will have marginal growth. Outdoor had a great 2013, with a swing from-8pc in 2012 to +8pc, mainly due to higher demand for large formats (billboards, street-side and transport).
"Although modest, it's great at last to see some spend growth forecast to return to the Irish Advertising market," GroupM Ireland chief executive Bill Kinlay said. "Hopefully it will mark the beginning of the end of this long hard recession and the realisation that Irish advertising represents exceptional value and delivers strong return on investment".
Ireland's forecasts fall slightly below the rest of Western Europe, which is expected to expanded by 2pc. But it is the UK that is bucking the trend; digital now accounts for almost 50pc of its market, which is predicted to grow by 6pc in 2014, impressive for a mature economy.
COMMUNICATE IF YOU WANT JOB
THE NEW Year incites us all to identify opportunities ahead, so two government tenders currently pending may be of interest for communications executives setting out their game plan for 2014. RTE is seeking PR and communication services for free TV service Saorview, with a deadline of January 14. Irish Rail is also seeking two lots of marketing assistance. The first concerns strategic planning and creative advertising services and the second is for media planning and buying services, to place advertising in all forms of media. The deadline for Irish Rail is January 22.
FLAHAVAN'S FIT FOR CAMPAIGN
WATERFORD-based oat supplier Flahavan's has launched a new campaign themed around fitness and health. Titled "Energy for Life", the campaign includes 30-second commercials to broadcast on television and radio over the next three months. Ireland's best-known porridge brand spent €340,000 on the campaign, which was developed by Irish International. The production company for the TV commercial was Butter, directed by Brian Williams.
According to the 200-year-old family business, health considerations are motivating Irish consumers more than ever before. "Our research showed that Irish people have become more conscious of the need to be healthy and are increasingly involved in a number of sports and healthy activities. Flahavan's is the perfect breakfast food for these healthy lifestyles" said sales director John Noonan.
JC DECAUX GETS BACK ON BIKES
DUBLIN Bikes is taking advantage of its relationship with billboard giant JC Decaux through the launch of a new outdoor advertising campaign to accompany its expansion. The urban bicycle rental scheme, whose bike numbers will have trebled in size to 1,500 by this summer, is jumping on the post-Christmas fitness bandwagon and urging people to "join the revolution" by signing up. The campaign is running across multiple JC Decaux formats including Luas billboards.
Dublin Bikes has an unusual management agreement with JC Decaux. The French advertising company operates the scheme, on behalf of Dublin City Council, in exchange for free advertising space. It meets most of the scheme's funding. It even publishes the Dublin Bikes website.