The Advertising Association promotes the role and rights of responsible advertising and its value to people, society, businesses and the economy. We represent UK advertisers, agencies and brands on behalf of the entire industry, acting as the connection between industry professionals and the politicians and policy-makers.


The Advertising Association focuses on major industry and policy areas that have huge ramifications on UK advertising. This section contains our work around Brexit, HFSS and gambling advertising, data and e-privacy, trust, the digital charter and our Industrial Strategy campaigns.

Credos is the advertising industry’s independent think tank. It produces research, evidence and reports into the impact and effectiveness of and public and political response to advertising on behalf of UK advertisers in order to enable the industry to make informed decisions.

Front Foot is our industry’s member network of over 50 businesses across UK advertising. It aims to promote the role of responsible advertising and its value to people, society and the economy through a coalition of senior leaders from advertisers, agencies and media owners.

We run a number of events throughout the year, from our annual LEAD summit to the Media Business Course and regular breakfast briefings for our members. We are also the official UK representative for the world’s biggest festival of creativity – Cannes Lions.


Ad Pays 3: The value of advertising to the UK’s culture, media and sport

Ad Pays Series

The UK advertising industry’s contribution to the wider economy is well-established. This report takes a closer look at a corollary benefit – the funding that advertising provides to the UK’s media, culture and sport, to determine the value of advertising to our lives as a whole.

Advertising’s primary role in society is economic. It helps to fuel growth, competition and innovation while enabling firms to bring people better, more affordable products and services.

Its £100 billion contribution to the UK economy, as analysed in Deloitte’s first report for the Advertising Association, comprises the many ways in which UK citizens and companies benefit economically from advertising activity.

But there’s another way in which advertising, in its broadest sense, enhances the quality of people’s lives. It funds the media, culture and sports people love and enjoy. Without the funding that advertising provides, much of what people value could face a significant decline in quality; much else would require fees and charges beyond what millions would be able to pay. Some things might even become unviable in their current form.

This report examines the impact of advertising on the media, and on the activities that people enjoy in their everyday lives. We estimate the “individual value” that this amounts to – the value, translated into monetary terms, of the perceived benefits people get from using services that are free or subsidised by advertising. We focus on television, radio, online services, newspapers and magazines, cinema and the arts, and sport.

The survey, of 1000 people, clearly shows that while people greatly value access to these services, they are not able (or willing, when set against their other financial constraints) to meet the full costs themselves.

The Advertising Association estimates that the gap between what people are willing to pay and the true cost of the advertising-funded media they receive is almost £5 billion, which is equal to £187 per household per year.

Header image via Bronac McNeill.

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"There is more advertising in people's lives simply because advertising is paying for the things they most like doing"

Andy Duncan President, Advertising Association

Value to people in the UK from ad-supported media and culture

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