Q3 2018 Bellwether Report

The IPA Bellwether Report is a quarterly survey outlining companies’ marketing spend intentions and financial confidence.

The Bellwether Report is researched and published by IHS Markit on behalf of the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising. The report features original data drawn from a panel of around 300 UK marketing professionals and provides a key indicator of the health of the economy. The survey panel has been carefully selected to represent all key business sectors, drawn primarily from the nation’s top 1000 companies.

Key findings from the Q3 2018 survey:

  • Weaker budget trends observed across all Bellwether categories
  • Cost pressures and growing uncertainty weigh on budgets
  • Internet marketing spending plans continue to provide key support to growth
  • Most downbeat assessment on industry-wide financial prospects since Q4 2011
  • Muted adspend growth forecasts for 2018 and 2019

Commenting on the latest survey results, Paul Bainsfair, IPA Director General, says:

"With ongoing Brexit uncertainty, it is perhaps no wonder that companies are having to be more cautious with their marketing spend and are inevitably increasingly downcast about their financial prospects. Despite this, however, we must take some solace in the fact that investment in main media spend is fairly constant quarter-on-quarter. As the evidence shows, main media is the most effective route to building brands. At a time when just under two-thirds are pressing pause on their marketing spend, perhaps this provides an opportunity for others to get cut-through and see whether fortune really does favour the brave."