Web Ad Spending Rises 16% in 2003

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Internet advertising spending rose 15.7 percent in 2003, making the Web the highest growth media, according to figures released yesterday.

TNS Media Intelligence/CMR said spending on Internet advertising hit $6.5 billion in 2003, up from $5.6 billion a year earlier. The spending surge pushed Web advertising closer to overtaking local radio ($6.7 billion) as the No. 7 ad medium. The Internet's growth far outpaced the overall ad industry, which rose 6 percent for the year.

The ad spending forecaster attributed the rise to the Internet gaining a foothold as a mainstream ad medium, thanks to more broadband connections, better ad formats and improved efficiency.

The Internet accounted for 5.1 percent of ad spending in 2003, up from 4.6 percent in 2002.

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