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Media Market in the Russian Federation: 2018 Trends



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The Russian advertising market today is a flourishing industry. However, it has its peculiarities and development trends. We prepared information that makes it possible to understand what specificities the media advertising market will have in 2018.

How will the Russian media market develop in 2018? What trends will determine its growth? Read this article in the RMAA Group blog to learn the forecast for the upcoming year that is directly related to media advertising in Russia.

Russian Advertising Focus Areas: 2017 Results and 2018 Assumptions

In 2017, the Russian advertising market saw active development of various advertising segments, encouraged by launch of new instruments and technologies. Advertisers found way to various innovative decisions, such as ones related to Big Data usage. Russian search systems changed their principles of search advertising and got more focused on behavioral factors.

Development of digital tools opens big opportunities for advertisers already today:

  • Media plan management;
  • Real time control over key performance indicators;
  • Detailed analysis of each performed advertising campaign.

Digital segment goes on ramping up. As of year-end 2017, the Internet almost gave the dust to TV advertising. However, in 2018 the TV advertising market will not be conserved, but will grow, too. According to projections of analysts, this advertising line will increase more than 10% this year. Compared to the Internet advertising, which growth rate will show more than 25%, TV will still remain the most demanded advertising segment.

According to forecasts of experts, these growth increases are to be awaited in 2018.

As for other media advertising directions (radio, outdoor advertising, and ads in printed mass media), according to 2017 statistics, there was no special growth of demand or introduction of new technologies. Basically, the advertising market in these segments is characterized by application of traditional methods. It is admissible to suppose that in 2018 these methods will be same. However, their effective use will directly depend on the analysis of advertising opportunities within a particular period of an advertising campaign and on the consideration of factors that are able to affect the advertising result.

Trends and Events That Will Define Development of the Russian Advertising Market in 2018

2018 Important Events

As it is known, big events always influence the advertising market. In 2018, Russia will host the FIFA World Cup. Events of such scale attract attention of wide audience and contribute to increase in marketing activities. However, due to the event’s peculiarities, foreign advertisers will have to consider numerous factors of ads placement during FIFA in Russian. It will help to advertise goods and services during the World Cup more effectively.

In March 2018, there will be presidential elections in the Russian Federation. This is obviously interesting for most Russians as they already monitor what’s going on and actively use the Internet. Foreign companies should definitely use this activeness of Russian citizens, for instance, by driving up search and TV advertisements in large Russian channels.

Development of Mobile Technologies and Online Promotion Tools

We should take note of the development of mobile technologies. In 2018, 5G networks will become widespread. The data transmission speed will boost, which will lead to the increase in the number of mobile users. Russians will be using mobile devices for the Internet connection and listening to radio channels more often. The usage of opportunities of respective advertising market directions will clearly grow.

According to estimates, already known Internet promotion tools will be developing in 2018. However, new technologies will be growing, too, in particular, ones that will allow better understanding of needs of perspective buyers. It will enable not only to analyze the bygones and their influence on the audience, but also to make a quite evident forecast, based on the results.

Advertising Visualization and Legal Restrictions

During the organization of advertising campaigns, it will be creative decisions that will gain popularity. Usual ads will result in a weaker effect. Russian users have already got a specific defensive reaction at ads on TV, the Internet, radio etc. So, in order to attract their attention, one will have to use more unusual approaches, bearing in mind interests and peculiar perception of the Russian ‘environment’.

A number of legislative initiatives will be implemented in 2018. Their entry into force should be monitored in order not to face advertising bans. For example, there will be new developments in the field of medicines; consequently, foreign pharmaceutical companies, when willing to enter into the Russian market, will have to make allowances for new requirements of Russian lawmakers.

2018 Curious Forecasts by Media Experts

2018 is a Messengers’ Year!

Analyzing the opinions of experts in the Russian advertising market, it is possible to come not only to the aforesaid conclusions. Many of them believe, judging from their expertise, that 2018 will be a year of messengers that have already become an advertising content consumption channel. Messengers used to act a functional component of social networks and websites of various services, but now we can observe their separation into an independent tool. For example, Facebook has already been divided into its app and its messenger; the same tendency is seen in Instagram.

Video Ads in Internet

Video advertisements in the Internet will become one of the most progressing trends in digital marketing. This conclusion is quite justified: in 2017, there was a constant growth of their relevance and ability to produce a necessary effect. It is known that YouTube and other large video portals shouldered an essential share of budgets in 2017. Besides, it is visualized advertising which popularity level is going up, that is why it is reasonable to suppose that this tendency will survive in 2018, too.

Social Networks

As for social networks, their hits by Russians are very high today. Experts believe that in 2018 the SMM sphere will be characterized by both active development of already existing technologies and arrival of new tools. For instance, Facebook began active development of AR technologies. Look what should be awaited in the nearest future:

  • introduction of the image search system—a similar tool used by search systems. Today, when one needs to find a picture, Yandex and Google propose to bring in a picture, clicking a relevant button. As a result, the system finds similar pictures and shows them to the user for acquaintance. Facebook is going to introduce the same tool inside the social network system;
  • development of the Facebook Spaces platform, which is similar to the Oculus Rift network with Touch controllers. Facebook Spaces is a 3D version of social network communication. At the moment, it is a beta, more similar to an animated game with invitations of real users from Facebook. To control operations, it is prescribed to use special VR devices—Touch controllers.

The data below shows the level of interest that Russians show to popular social networks.

To sum up, in view of the above, we can surely say that in 2018 the Internet will become a wider platform for advertising promotion at the expense of growth in users’ activity. Modern Russian will be using opportunities of the World Wide Web more and more often to learn about new events, offered goods and services, and many others. Consequently, the domain of the Russian advertising market related to digital marketing will be expanding. For greater advertising results, both old and new technologies will be developing. However, it is necessary to understand that Russian users of the Internet have their behavioral specifics. One needs to take them into account if a foreign company is planning a successful entry into the Russian market. Professional assistance of RMAA Group experts is the best solution if there is a goal for 2018 to present your goods or services to consumers living in the territory of Russia and CIS.


You are welcome to download our guide "How does the media-buying market in Russia work?" for free. The book contains more detailed information on the development of each separate direction in the media advertising market in Russian in 2018, compared to the previous year. This information, based on analytical digital data and forecasts, will serve as a good tool to understand peculiarities of growth in advertising volumes and application of new technologies in the Russian media market.


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About the Author

The editor of the RMAA Group`s blog. Copywriter since 2009. Engaged in a large-scale study of the Russian advertising market and its features.

Author Natalya Mustafaeva
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