Site-wide links

Direct Mail Accounts for 43% of Local Media Retail Ad Spend

Ad Projections


July 30, 2013 -- Local media ad space advising firm BIA/Kelsey’s most recent local market ad forecast report, Media Ad View Plus, has several findings of note. 

The study, which gives a market-by-market view of the local media pie, reveals:


  • The total local media market is calculated to be $132.5 billion. 


  • Looking across all verticals, direct mail accounts for 27% of all local market spend ($35.8 billion).
  • ​Direct mail dominates ad spend by local retail advertising, garnering over 43% of total retail advertising in 2012.


  • Despite ongoing declines in circulation, in 2012 newspapers generated $22.5 billion for a 17.1% share of total advertising spend, second only to direct mail.


  • Six vertical categories each generated more than $1 billion from online advertising in 2012 — technology, retail, automotive, leisure/recreational, financial/insurance and restaurants. BIA/Kelsey calculates that these six categories accounted for close to 80% of total online advertising.

  • Print Yellow Pages still dominates the local general services category (basically anyone who shows up at your house in a van). In 2012, general services advertisers spent $3.8 billion on print Yellow Pages, representing nearly a quarter of total spend in that category.
  • Retail, financial/insurance, restaurants, automotive and technology combine to represent roughly three quarters of local radio advertising revenue.



Source:  BIA/Kelsey, June 2013




About:  BIA/Kelsey defines the local media advertising marketplace as those media that provide local audiences to all types of advertisers. Read about the Media Ad View methodology.

Sources:  BIA/Kelsey, Mining the Richness of Media Ad View, July 25, 2013 and BIA/Kelsey, Local Ad Dollars 2013 – What Business Categories Are Spending and Where, accessed August 14, 2013.