Online gambling dominates gambling advertising finds new ACMA research

Online gambling providers accounted for half of the more than one million gambling ads aired across Australian free-to-air TV and metro radio in the year to April 2023, according to new research commissioned by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).

Online gambling also racked up the highest spend of all gambling advertisers, accounting for 65% of the $238.63 million spending on gambling advertising across free-to-air TV (metro and regional), metro radio and online.

The research, undertaken on behalf of the industry regulator by Nielsen, used Nielsen’s Ad Intel data to provide a snapshot of the volume and spend of gambling advertising in Australia between May 2022 and April 2023. Offering a breakdown of the time-of-day, total number of spots, advertiser type and spend across TV, radio and online, the research was commissioned to provide a picture of the gambling advertising landscape in Australia. The research, however, does not include advertising spend on subscription TV as the Nielsen Ad Intel technology does not capture this data.

It comes as calls for tougher gambling advertising restrictions have been growing louder. The online gambling industry has been under particularly scrutiny following a parliamentary inquiry into the sector earlier this year, the recommendations of which included a proposal for a ban on online gambling advertising across television, radio, online and newspapers, phased in over three years. The recommendations are currently under consideration by the federal government.

Beyond the dominance of online gambling ads, the report also found that free-to-air TV was the marker with the greatest ad spend, with $133 million spent on metro and $29 million on regional. Social media spend was $34.6 million, radio was $22.4 million, and $19.5 million was spent across other online platforms.

On TV, gambling advertising peaked in the evenings, with 22% shown between 7pm and 10pm, while on radio the commuter periods between 6am and 8am and 5pm and 6pm saw the highest volume of gambling advertising.

Research from ACMA and Nielsen found that online gambling providers accounted for the majority of gambling advertising on metro and regional FTA TV



Online gambling services also held the largest share in advertising spots in metro radio markets, however the hourly distribution was more even compared to TV.

Unsurprisingly, the report’s findings suggest that the much debated gambling advertising space is dominated by a few key players, with five of the top 10 gambling advertisers across regional and metro TV and metro being online gambling services. These five advertisers accounted for almost half a million of the gambling ads aired during the study period.

The full report can be viewed on ACMA’s website.


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