Internet Poised to Become Ad Stronghold

NEW YORK The Internet is poised to overtake magazines in 2010 as the third-largest ad medium in the world.

That was the prediction yesterday by Steve King, CEO of communications strategy company ZenithOptimedia in a talk to media leaders. King made his comments at the 35th annual UBS Global Media & Communications Conference in New York.

In his speech, he said he sees Internet advertising hitting $36 billion this year, $5 billion above what was predicted a year ago.

His comments echoed a report issued by ZenithOptimedia today, which sees overall global ad spend growing 6.7 percent in 2008, up from this year’s 5.3 percent. The company attributes the expected ad growth to the Olympic games, the U.S. presidential election and European soccer.

The report also predicted Internet ad spending will jump by 69 percent between now and 2010, and its ad-share will rise from 8.1 percent today to 11.5 percent three years hence.

“We predict global Internet advertising to pass three milestones in the next three years,” a rep for Zenith said in a statement. “To overtake radio advertising in 2008; to attain a double-digit share of global advertising in 2009; and to overtake magazine advertising in 2010, with 11.5 percent of total ad spend.”