Nielsen: Tech ad spend soared in Q1 with Microsoft in the lead

Summary:Nielsen identify some winners in the "the never-ending battle to gain market share and stand out as the 'it' gadget of our time."

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Analysts at various market intelligence firms seem to be pointing toward a petite tech boom this week. Following up a report from CB Insights about improving IPOs , Nielsen is chiming in with positive figures for technology ad spend.

To clarify, the figures refer to how much technology companies dished out to advertise their own products, or as Nielsen reps put it, "the never-ending battle to gain market share and stand out as the 'it' gadget of our time."

Nielsen found that domestic tech ad spend climbed to $723 million during the first quarter of 2013 -- a 30 percent increase annually.

The report also highlights how significant this is when ad spend was actually down by approximately one percent across all other verticals.

Analysts reflected that this surge is due in part to more aggressive tactics being employed to convince consumers that they (and they alone) offer the fastest and smartest devices on the market.

Here's more:

The technology industry hasn’t seen a first-quarter jump of this magnitude in several years—especially not when advertisers are exercising restraint in most other industries. But it speaks to a larger, recent trend of consumers’ willingness to adopt new technology, and advertisers are making sure they don’t miss an opportunity to connect with potential customers.

Turns out the leader in tech ad spend during Q1 was Microsoft, which was firing on all fronts trying to push Windows 8, Windows Phone, and the Surface tablet.

With a whopping 200 percent increase in ad spend year-over-year, Microsoft knocked Intuit out of the top spot for the first time in five years.

That might seem like an unusual match-up, but when you consider that the first quarter is dominated by the tax season -- Intuit's prime time ahead of April 15 -- then it goes to show how aggressive Microsoft must have been in its advertising and marketing efforts.

Topics: E-Commerce, Microsoft, Tech Industry

About

Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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