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Victorian Government Advertising Report 2018-19

Review the government's expenditure on advertising in 2018-19


Date:
August 2020

Introduction - government advertising categories

This report provides an overview of Victorian Government media advertising expenditure for the period 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019.

Media advertising expenditure

The Victorian Government purchases media through the whole of Victorian Government Master Agency Media Services (MAMS) state purchase contract.

The MAMS contract covers media planning and buying on behalf of government and is managed by the Department of Treasury and Finance.

Victorian Public Sector organisations that used the MAMS contract during 2018–19 qualified for significantly discounted government media rates. These included:

  • all Victorian Government departments
  • public bodies (which include, but are not limited to, statutory authorities, public entities, special bodies and other users). Examples include the Transport Accident Commission (TAC), Visit Victoria, WorkSafe Victoria and TAFE institutions.

For more information about the MAMS contract visit the MAMS page on the Victorian Government procurement website.

Government advertising categories

The Victorian Government classifies paid media advertising into three categories:

  1. Campaign advertising, which is designed to inform, educate, motivate or change behaviour. It requires strategic planning of creative and media services to achieve set objectives.
  2. Functional advertising, which is specifically used to provide the public with information and is generally simple and informative and only appears for a short time. Examples include public notices, notifications of public meetings, requests for tender, enrolment notices, statutory or regulatory notices, and emergency or safety announcements.
  3. Recruitment advertising, which is used to promote a specific job vacancy or a limited number of roles. Larger scale, industry-wide recruitment by government is usually classed as 'campaign' advertising.

Collectively, functional and recruitment advertising are referred to as ‘non-campaign’ advertising.

During the 2018–19 financial year, MediaCom provided campaign advertising as well as functional and recruitment advertising services to government.

Expenditure on major government campaigns

Each year, government departments and public bodies publish information within their annual reports about their expenditure on major advertising campaigns, as required by the relevant Financial Reporting Direction.[1]

For 2018–19, departments and bodies are required to report on advertising campaigns with a total media spend of $100,000 or greater (exclusive of GST), including:

  • the name of the advertising campaign
  • the start and end date of the campaign
  • a summary of the campaign
  • details of campaign expenditure for the reporting period (exclusive of GST).

This reporting is collated and summarised in the Victorian Government Advertising Campaign Activity Summary 2018–19, available on the vic.gov.au website.

Government advertising plan for 2018–19

Each year the Victorian Government publishes an annual advertising plan, which provides an overview of government advertising campaigns planned for that year.

The Victorian Government Advertising Plan for 2018–19 is available on the vic.gov.au website.

[1] For 2018–19, the relevant Financial Reporting Direction was FRD 22H Standard disclosures in the Report of Operations (May 2017).


Total Victorian Government advertising expenditure - over the years

Compare government advertising expenditure from 2018-19 back to 2008-09.

The Victorian Government spent a total of $102.8 million on media advertising from
1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019, comprising campaign and non-campaign advertising. This total is lower than the previous year’s total of $105.7 million.

Total government advertising expenditure for 2018–19 and previous years is shown in the chart below.

Victorian government advertising expenditure from 2008-09 to 2018-19
Year Millions
2018-19 $102.8
2017-18 $105.7
2016-17 $82.4
2015-16 $74.6
2014-15 $94.9
2013-14 $96.1
2012-13 $98.4
2011-12 $103.1
2010-11 $112.8
2009-10 $130.3
2008-09 $114.6


Total Victorian Government advertising expenditure by category 2018-19

Compare the expenditure on campaign and non-campaign advertising

Campaign advertising accounted for 86 per cent of Victorian Government advertising expenditure in 2018–19. Non-campaign advertising, comprising functional and recruitment advertising, accounted for the remaining 14 per cent of advertising expenditure for the year.

Pie Chart showing Victorian Government advertising expenditure by category

2018-19 Campaign advertising expenditure $88.5 million (86%); Functional advertising expenditure $8.3 million (8%) and Recruitment advertising expenditure $6.1 million (6%)


Victorian Government campaign and non-campaign advertising expenditure by departments and agencies 2018-19

A picture of the what departments and agencies are spending on campaigns versus functional and recruitment advertising combined

The chart below shows Victorian Government expenditure by government departments and government agencies, for campaign and non-campaign advertising, as a percentage of total advertising expenditure for 2018–19.

In 2018–19, government agencies (such as WorkSafe Victoria and the Transport Accident Commission) accounted for 68 per cent of total government advertising expenditure, while government departments (such as the Department of Justice and Community Safety) accounted for the remaining 32 per cent of expenditure.

The Victorian Government Advertising Campaign Activity Summary 2018–19 provides a summary of major government campaigns undertaken in 2018–19.

Pie Chart showing Victorian Government campaign and non-campaign advertising expenditure by departments and agencies 2018-19

2018-19 Agencies campaign advertising $58.6 million (57%); Agencies non-campaign advertising $11.5 million (11%); Departments campaign advertising $29.9 million (29%); and Departments non-campaign advertising $2.9 million (3%)

Note: Non-campaign advertising comprises both functional and recruitment advertising. 


Top 10 advertisers by campaign expenditure 2018-19

Ranking the top ten departments and agencies in terms of spend on campaign advertising

Rank Advertiser Example campaigns Expenditure
Visit Victoria Various intrastate and interstate campaigns to promote Victoria as a tourist destination, including promoting Melbourne to interstate visitors. Other campaigns promoted tourism in regional Victoria and Melbourne’s schedule of major events in 2018–19. $10,727,744
2 Transport Accident Commission (TAC) Numerous road safety campaigns targeting excessive speed and drink and drug driving, encouraging parents to model positive behavior for future drivers, improving road safety for motorcyclists, and ongoing seasonal campaigns targeting fatigue and holiday road safety. $8,074,727
3 WorkSafe Victoria Numerous campaigns, including the ‘Getting back’ return-to-work and ‘Bad Days’ enforcement campaigns, and the launch of a campaign promoting awareness of mental and physical workplace safety. Ongoing campaigns also targeted quad bike farm safety, asbestos and violence against healthcare workers. $6,577,628
4 Department of Education and Training Various campaigns to promote the Victorian TAFE sector, including the ‘TAFE Will Take You There’ campaign, as well as campaigns to prevent children being left in cars and to support the Victorian State Schools Spectacular. $6,407,317
5 Victoria Police Advertising, communication and marketing activities for the recruitment of Victoria Police Officers and Protective Services Officers. $4,901,915
6 Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation Campaigns to reduce harm caused by gambling, including help and early intervention campaigns for gamblers, 100 Day Challenge and the ‘Love the game, not the odds’ campaign targeting the normalisation of gambling in sport. $4,764,767
7 Department of Justice and Community Safety 2018–19 Summer Fire safety and awareness campaign, Fire Action Week and the Play it Safe by the Water campaign. $4,609,973
8 Department of Health and Human Services ‘Save Lives, Save 000 For Emergencies’ ambulance campaign, Influenza, Safescript and Heat Health/Extreme Heat Warnings campaigns. $4,280,603
9 Victorian Electoral Commission Campaign to promote the 2018 State Election and to encourage Victorians to enroll to vote. $3,901,804
10 Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning Major campaigns included Victorian Energy Compare, encouraging Victorians to access the best energy deal for them, and the Planned Burns 2018–19 campaign, to advise communities of planned burns in their local area. $3,270,306

Note: This report contains advertising expenditure data provided to the Department of Premier and Cabinet by MediaCom Australia for the 2018–19 financial year, and includes all paid advertising undertaken via the government’s MAMS contract. Expenditure figures presented in this report may differ from those published in the annual reports of government departments and public bodies, which may also include the value of media partnerships/sponsorships, and production and other fees associated with advertising campaigns.


Major functional and recruitment advertisers 2018-19

A list of the key departments and agencies spending on non-campaign advertising

Functional advertising

In 2018–19, the highest spending departments and agencies for functional advertising were:

  • Major Transport Infrastructure Authority 
  • VicRoads 
  • Public Transport Victoria
  • Victorian Electoral Commission 
  • Department of Transport 
  • The Gordon TAFE 
  • Melbourne Water
  • V/Line 
  • Essential Services Commission and
  • Worksafe Victoria.

Recruitment advertising

In 2018–19, the highest spending departments and agencies for recruitment advertising were:

  • Department of Health and Human Services 
  • Department of Justice and Community Safety 
  • Department of Education and Training
  • Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning and
  • the Major Transport Infrastructure Authority.

Victorian Government advertising expenditure by channel 2018-19

A picture of which media channels are attracting a higher proportion of government advertising spend.

The chart below shows percentage of total government advertising expenditure for 2018–19 per advertising channel.

Expenditure for 2018–19 showed an increase in the proportion of advertising via digital platforms to 32.7 per cent of the total, compared to 29.9 per cent in 2017–18.

In 2018–19, the proportion of television advertising also increased slightly to 26.2 per cent of all government advertising, compared to 25.5 per cent in 2017–18, while expenditure on press advertising continued to decrease compared to the previous years – in 2018–19 press advertising represented 13.2 per cent of advertising expenditure, a decrease from 15.2 per cent in 2017–18.

Radio accounted for 14.3 per cent of total advertising expenditure in 2018–19, compared to 13.4 per cent in 2017–18, while outdoor advertising decreased to 11 per cent (compared to 11.8 per cent in 2017–18).

Pie chart showing Victorian Government advertising expenditure by channel 2018-19

Digital 32.7%; Television 26.2%; Radio 14.3%; Press 13.2%; Outdoor 11%; Cinema 1.6%; Magazines 0.7%; and Other 0.2% 


Victorian Government campaign advertising by communication priority areas 2018-19

Where government campaign expenditure is focused in terms of government priorities

All campaign advertising undertaken by the Victorian Government during 2018–19 fulfilled one of five ‘priority areas’ for government communication. These priority areas are outlined in the Victorian Government Advertising Plan 2018–19:

  • Public safety and behaviour change
  • Building social cohesion and community spirit
  • Supporting commercial and economic investment in Victoria
  • Generation of revenue to support Victorian institutions and events
  • Ensuring compliance with legislation.

The chart below shows 2018–19 expenditure for each communication priority area as a proportion of the government’s total expenditure on campaign advertising.

Pie chart showing Victorian Government campaign advertising by communication priority areas 2018-19

Public safety and behaviour change 56.4 per cent, economic development and investment 20.6 per cent, generation of revenue for institutions and events 14.5 per cent, compliance with legislation 5.6 per cent and social cohesion and community spirit 2.8 per cent. 


Victorian Government communication targets

The Victorian Government is committed to communicating with all Victorians and has advertising expenditure targets for regional and multicultural media to help ensure effective communication with these audiences.

Regional media campaign advertising expenditure

The Victorian Government Regional Communication Policy requires that government departments and agencies place 15 per cent of their annual campaign media expenditure with regional and rural media.

This includes, but is not limited to, dedicated regional press, radio, television, outdoor media buys and significant media partnerships and sponsorships that can be identified as ‘regional or rural’.

Internet and digital advertising can also be used to communicate effectively with regional audiences; however, during 2018–19 these channels were not consistently classified as 'regional or rural' media. For this reason, expenditure on internet and digital advertising was not included when calculating the government’s regional advertising expenditure total for 2018–19.

In 2018–19, the Victorian Government spent $12,231,833 on campaign advertising through ‘non-digital’ regional and rural media (that is, press, radio, television and outdoor advertising).

This figure represents 20.1 per cent of the government’s total campaign advertising expenditure undertaken through non-digital media. This result is above the 15 per cent regional media expenditure target.

Multicultural media campaign advertising expenditure

The Victorian Government Multicultural Communication Policy requires that government departments and agencies commit a minimum of five per cent of their total campaign media expenditure towards multicultural media.

In 2018–19, the Victorian Government spent $3,231,571 on campaign advertising in non-digital multicultural media. This includes expenditure on print, radio and television advertising (but does not include expenditure on digital media).

This expenditure represents 5.3 per cent of the government’s total campaign advertising expenditure on print, radio and television advertising during 2018–19. This total exceeds the five per cent multicultural campaign advertising expenditure target.


Government communication policies and guidelines

In case you need more information on the Victorian Government's communication protocols and procedures

Victorian Government communication policies and guidelines ensure that government communication is effective, well managed and responsive to the diverse needs of the Victorian community. Policies and guidelines are reviewed and updated from time to time as needed.

Current policies and guidelines are located on the vic.gov.au website.


Reviewed 20 October 2020