With total advertising expenditure expected to reach $176 billion in 2014, the United States remains the largest ad market in the world, according to Zenith Optimedia's latest advertising market outlook
. Illustrating the extent of its lead, the U.S. ad market is worth more than the next six largest markets (China, Japan, Germany, UK, Brazil and France) combined.
The fact that China is expected to surpass Japan in terms of total advertising spending for the first time this year, conceals how far off the Chinese ad market still is compared to the other Top 10 markets. Adjusting advertising expenditure for population size paints a more accurate picture of where China actually stands: At $33, China’s per-capita ad spend is by far the smallest within the ten largest markets and roughly equivalent to U.S. per-capita spending in the 1940s.