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IAB’s Final ’07, Q4 Revenue Tally Is In: Growth Slowed, But Stayed Healthy; Search Up 41 Percent

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Online ad revenues for 2007 came in at $21.2 billion, a 26 percent rise over the $16.8 billion internet advertisers spent in 2006, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau. Back in February, the IAB projected a total of $21.1 billion for 2007 web ad expenditures. Meanwhile, the organization was precisely on target when it said Q4 revenues would be $5.9 billion – up 13 percent over Q307 and 24 percent over Q406. While both the 2007 and Q4 figures continued to hit new highs, as has been pointed out again and again, growth is slowing due to the law of large numbers, primarily. Still, it’s important to note that 2006’s $16.8 billion was about 35 percent higher than 2005’s online revenues, while Q407’s $4.8 billion presented a 32 percent year-over-year gain.

— Despite the winding down of 30 percent-plus growth rates, the IAB’s completed 2007 revenue figures also demonstrate the resiliency of online advertising as traditional media ad spend began to be impacted by the economic downturn. In terms of the individual segments that make up internet advertising, the IAB, along with PricewaterhouseCoopers, which crunched the numbers, search, display, classifieds and lead generation showed varying degrees of health during the full year:

— Display (including sponsorship, video) was $7.07 billion, up 34 percent. By itself, display ads amounted to $4.4 billion, a rise of 21 percent.
— Search came in at $8.8 billion, with a 41 percent increase.
— Classifieds, which have started to take a hit this year, grew 16 percent in 2007 to $3.3 billion.
— Lead gen, which started becoming less attractive last spring when the FTC began investigating deceptive practices by companies like ValueClick (NSDQ: VCLK), rose only 7 percent to $1.5 billion. Release