Unilever dropped out of the top three spending advertisers in the UK in 2018 for the first time in five years, as its expenditure fell 29% to £82.8m, figures from Nielsen have revealed.
The owner of brands including Marmite, Dove and Persil has been on a mission to cut back marketing spend since 2017 and reduce the number of agencies it works with.
Unilever’s key rival Procter & Gamble, which owns brands such as Gillette, Ariel and Always, clawed back the number one spot from Sky, even though the FMCG giant’s spend dropped 5% to £186.5m.
Sky moved to second place, after overtaking P&G last year, and reducing year-on-year spend by 30% to £124.2m. Nielsen said this was the biggest decline among the top-spending brands.
McDonald’s has entered the top three in third position, up from fifth, as it increased spend by 28% to £122.6m. It has overtaken Unilever and BT, which dropped spend by 5.6% to £109.3m.
Amazon’s spend is also up 18% in the UK to £87.5m. Outside the top 10, Comparethemarket.com and Camelot posted significant increases in spend, up 30% to £62.2m and 40% to £53.3m respectively.
Asda has entered the top 10 with a 13.7% rise to £68.8m, making it one of only two supermarkets in the list alongside Tesco.