Companies in this industry create advertising material and place it across media such as television, the internet (mobile and desktop), newspapers, magazines, radio, and outdoor displays. Major US advertising agencies include units of Interpublic and Omnicom; leading companies based outside the US include Dentsu and Hakuhodo DY Holdings (both based in Japan), and WPP (UK).
Demand for advertising is driven by companies that do business in sectors such as automotive, retail, entertainment and media, food and beverages, and technology. The profitability of individual agencies depends on the ability to attract and retain creative employees and establish and maintain successful relationships with clients. The US industry is fragmented: the top 50 advertising agencies account for less than 50% of revenue.
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Global spending on advertising goes mainly toward the internet (desktop and mobile combined, about 40%), television (about 35%), and newspapers (10%), according to Zenith. The remainder is split between outdoor outlets (billboards, transit areas, street furniture, and other displays), radio, magazines, and cinema advertising. Internet advertising overtook television in 2017, driven by growth in mobile ad spending.