BIA/Kelsey Forecasts U.S. Social Media Ad Spending to Reach $9.8 Billion by 2016

The local segment of U.S. social media ad spending will reach $3.1 billion in 2016

May 15, 2012, 03:00 ET from BIA/Kelsey

CHANTILLY, Va., May 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Social media advertising revenues will grow from $3.8 billion in 2011 to $9.8 billion in 2016, representing a compound annual growth rate of 21 percent, according to BIA/Kelsey's U.S. Local Media Forecast (2011-2016). BIA/Kelsey, adviser to companies in the local media space, expects the local segment of U.S. social media advertising revenues to grow from $840 million in 2011 to $3.1 billion in 2016 (CAGR: 29.8 percent).


"Better performance, coupled with richer formats and creative elements, like video, will be the principal social ad market growth drivers," said Jed Williams, analyst and program director, Social Local Media, BIA/Kelsey. "Social advertising's local business penetration will steadily increase as SMBs' understanding of social media deepens, and as the networks continually improve the ease of onboarding and campaign management. Facebook opening its Ads API to more partners, including those that work with SMBs, and Twitter's self-serve platform will help to 'democratize' social ads, which will ultimately lead to more local growth."

BIA/Kelsey defines social media advertising as money spent on advertising formats across social networks. The predominant social ad format continues to be display, spending on which will increase from $3.6 billion in 2011 to $9.2 billion in 2016 (CAGR: 20.6 percent), according to the forecast. BIA/Kelsey expects the social non-display segment to grow from $140 million in 2010 to $630 million in 2016 (CAGR: 35.2 percent).

Findings from the social local media forecast will be discussed during BIA/Kelsey's upcoming conference, Mobile Local Media San Francisco, which takes place June 27. MLM San Francisco is focused on the intersection of mobile, local and social media. Information about this new one-day event is available at

Additional BIA/Kelsey analysis of the social media space is available in a special BIA/Kelsey advisory report titled, "$100B Valuation: Can Facebook Support It ... and How?" The report is available for purchase at In addition, a slide presentation and on-demand playback of a companion webinar on this topic is available at no charge at

About BIA/Kelsey's U.S. Local Media Forecast

BIA/Kelsey's U.S. Local Media Forecast (2011-2016) draws from proprietary data; company, industry and country information in the public domain; and discussions with clients and non-clients about the direction and pace of development in the local media marketplace. The social local media segment of the forecast is available to clients of the firm's Social Local Media Continuous Advisory Service. For information on BIA/Kelsey's CAS offerings, contact Steve Passwaiter at or visit

About BIA/Kelsey (

BIA/Kelsey advises companies in the local media space through consulting and valuation services, research, Continuous Advisory Services and conferences. Since 1983 BIA/Kelsey has been a resource to the media, mobile advertising, telecommunications, Yellow Pages and electronic directory markets, as well as to government agencies, law firms and investment companies looking to understand trends and revenue drivers. BIA/Kelsey's annual conferences draw executives from across industries seeking expert guidance on how companies are finding innovative ways to grow. Additional information is available at, on the company's Local Media Watch blog and on Twitter at