November 19, 2018 | by Alexian Chiavegato

AdTech Weekly Roundup

A look at how last week’s news affects mobile publishers…

Brands Now Spend Nearly Two Thirds of Digital Advertising on Mobile, IAB Says
Marketers are spending more than ever on digital advertising, spurred by the growth of mobile device usage, online shopping, video viewership and expanding audiences for music and podcasts.

Spending on digital advertising in the U.S. during the first half of 2018 grew 23% to $49.5 billion from $40.3 billion during the same period last year, according to a report released today by the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. That is comparable to the 23% growth between 2016 and 2017. Much of that spending was on ads for mobile devices, according to the report.

Marketers spent $30.9 billion on mobile advertising in the first half of 2018, nearly 63% of their total digital ad spend. Mobile comprised 54% of digital spending a year earlier. Much of the digital ad growth is a result of younger audiences adopting newer media consumption formats such as audio and mobile video and audio, the IAB report said. Digital audio spending grew 31% to $935 million in the first half, according to the report, on pace to exceed the format’s $1.8 billion mark for 2017 as a whole. Mobile video revenue grew to $4.2 billion in the first half of 2018, up 60.5% from the same period the previous year.

One-in-Six Millennials will do more Holiday Shopping on Mobile than Last Year
Holiday shoppers have a “mobility mindset” that’s demonstrated in their growing dependence on smartphones to find and pay for gifts.

About one in six (16%) of millennials plan to make more direct mobile purchases this holiday season than last year, compared to 13% of Gen Xers and 7% of baby boomers, according to a survey by Oath, Verizon’s advertising and media unit, shared with Mobile Marketer. Almost two-thirds (61%) of millennials will use a mobile phone to browse gifts, compared with 50% of Gen Xers and 32% of boomers. In addition, 40% of millennials plan to make a direct purchase with a smartphone, compared with 25% of Gen Xers and 11% of boomers, the survey found.

The most common uses of a smartphone for shopping are comparing prices (71% of consumers), researching products (69%), communicating with friends and family about gift ideas (61%), checking product reviews (55%) and getting directions to stores (45%). Oath surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. consumers about their holiday shopping plans.

Ads Are Coming to WhatsApp Status Sometime in 2019, but Will Agencies Bite?
Ads are coming to WhatsApp Status, the Facebook-owned messaging application’s version of a stories format, sometime in 2019.
While ad buyers are looking forward to adding WhatsApp as an option for their clients, some are also wary of whether creative for other platforms’ stories offerings would translate well on the messaging app, as the bulk of its users are outside the U.S. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said during the company’s third-quarter earnings call last week that there are now more than 3 million business accounts on WhatsApp.

“Facebook has really tried to figure out the best opportunity to monetize WhatsApp,” said Courtney Blount, group director of creative agency The Media Kitchen. “There is definitely an appetite to reach an audience in a place where we know they are the most engaged. It’ll be interesting to see how brands begin one-to-one communication with a non-branded, non-heavy-hitting focus while still achieving whatever their business goals are.”

Advertiser Perceptions: How SSPs Can Win Market Share from Google
Google Ad Manager is the dominant supply side platform (SSP), according to Advertiser Perceptions’ 2018 Programmatic Intelligence Report.
But, the 154 publishers surveyed also valued platforms in areas like proactively shared insights and reporting – categories where Google didn’t perform as well as its competitors. “Google is the clear leader,” said Kevin Mannion, chief strategy officer at Advertiser Perceptions. “But publishers want partners that are going to help them find new ways to gain revenue and increase their margins. Those are the ones that are going to win – and we are seeing legacy SSPs step up in that regard.” Publishers want to work with SSPs that help them make better decisions by sharing insights and reports proactively. Publishers listed that attribute as their top partnership criteria in the report.

Google also ranked seventh among its peers when it came to the availability of its reporting, which measured frequency and quantity of reporting. But, Google ranked highly – right behind Twitter’s MoPub – in another area that publishers highly valued: protection against bad ads, bots and fraud.

Digital Video Ad Spend Is Accelerating
Digital video advertising revenue is moving at a rapid pace, with mobile video leading the way.

That is according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s Internet Advertising Revenue Report for the first half of 2018, which was produced by PwC and released by the IAB. The report found that video advertising revenue hit $7 billion in the first half of 2018, up 35% from the first half of 2017. Perhaps most notably, mobile video accounted for 60% of the video ad revenue, up 61% year over year and accounting for $4.2 billion of video ad spend. The IAB and PwC estimate that some 220 million Americans stream video each month, totaling 47 billion video streams per month, on average.

The organizations also estimate that video CPMs are up 5% year over year, averaging $25.63. The IAB and PwC project that digital video growth could be further fueled by the rollout of 5G internet, as well as “innovative formats and new pricing models, including premium placements and ad campaigns capable of running across an expanding universe of screens.”