UK Advertising; a global hub for a global industry

The UK is a creative and digital innovation hub to the world and an ideal partner for business growth.

The UK exports more ad services than it imports. Annual UK exports of advertising services reached a total of £7.9 billion in 2018 according to the latest ONS figures, a 15% increase as the industry overtook Telecommunications and Engineering services to become the second largest services for exports behind Computer Services. £3.7 billion worth of advertising services were exported to EU nations, but the USA remains the largest market for UK advertising services in terms of individual countries taking £1.1bn of UK advertising services exports. The US is followed by Germany (£1bn), France (£733m), Switzerland (£661m) and Ireland (£640m).

These export figures demonstrate the strength of the UK advertising industry on the world stage and the opportunities available.

Research by PwC, commissioned by the Advertising Association and the UK Advertising Exports Group (UKAEG), has identified that the UK’s success in advertising exports was found to be driven by creativity, talent and global reputation, which are all mutually reinforcing – without talent you can’t have the creativity to obtain a global reputation, and without a global reputation you can’t attract the quality of talent required to produce world class creativity.

The UK advertising industry is the most dynamic in Europe and represents an unparalleled concentration of creativity. The accolades speak for themselves.

Since 2005 the UK has won more Cannes Lions than any other European country – over 1,500!

A diverse workforce international workforce is central to the UK’s position as a global advertising and marketing hub. The UK also supplies a large amount of talent to other international hubs. The UK is the number one source of international advertising and marketing talent in New York, Paris and Amsterdam and has provided more than a third of recent migrants to Sydney’s advertising sector. These figures show an unmatched level of talent and technical skill in the UK.

If you wish to sell to the world, it’s helpful to come to the hub where you find the world represented in one place: the UK.

International clients believe that UK advertising is strategic and business savvy, setting the UK apart from other markets

“UK Advertising offers a go-to package. For example, Manhattan isn't at the same level. The cost of overheads etc... are very high and as a result you tend to get access to junior staff which in turn means lots of hand holding and more work at the client’s desk. When working with HeyHuman I get a more experienced team who understand business needs and speak in a common business language.”

Anon, US-based Global Vice President:

All of this makes the UK a true gateway to the wider world for any firm seeking to go global and reach the worldwide consumer. The UK is a creative and digital innovation hub to the world and an ideal partner for business growth.