AdTech Weekly Roundup

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

Amazon’s Ad Business May Be Growing Faster Than Thought
Amazon.com’s ad business is again outstripping earlier projections. Last September, the research firm eMarketer said Amazon would finish 2018 as the third-largest digital ad seller in the U.S., with a larger market share than eMarketer expected just six months earlier, partly due to accounting changes by the e-commerce giant.

EMarketer has once more increased its estimates for Amazon’s U.S. ad revenue for both past and future years. This time the boost is due partly to third-party data indicating that advertising provides more of Amazon’s revenue than was thought, said Monica Peart, senior forecasting director at eMarketer.
EMarketer now estimates that Amazon’s ad revenue in 2017 totaled $3.3 billion, for example, up from its estimate of $1.9 billion in September.

Amazon generates advertising revenue from various business units, including its e-commerce site, the live-streaming videogaming site Twitch, film site IMDb and its advertising technology division. Amazon’s ad revenue is expected to increase to $15 billion in 2020, or just under 10% of the digital ad market share in the U.S., from $11.3 billion in 2019 and an 8.8% share, according to the latest forecast.

How Should Mobile Ad Effectiveness Be Measured?
IAB UK recently launched National Anti Click-Through Rate Day, to highlight the industry’s over-reliance on vanity metrics for measuring digital ad effectiveness. This light-hearted message underlined a more serious need for advertisers to move away from CTR, which only provides a very narrow view on campaign success. To support this message, the IAB released a Measurement Toolkit, to help support advertisers as they transition to more robust effectiveness metrics.

The IAB Measurement Toolkit consolidates current best practices and provides guidance on measuring digital advertising in the context of other media. It sets out the main models and techniques that can be used to measure digital advertising, from big picture approaches (e.g. econometrics) to more granular analysis (e.g. attribution modelling), showing how they fit together and how to use them. The guide concludes with a set of practical templates and checklists for creating your own measurement strategy.

Mobile marketers seeing ‘significant’ gains in data initiatives and investments
If you’re a mobile marketer and not putting a laser focus on data-driven campaigns, then where have you been? According to new figures from marketing platform YouAppi, almost all mobile marketers have increased focus and investment on data over the past five years – with the vast majority seeing improvements as a result.

The study, which polled more than 500 global in-house and agency marketers, found an overwhelming 97% saw investments in data had been worthwhile, with more than half seeing ‘significant’ improvements.

The majority (81%) said they had invested in reporting and dashboard technology, alongside investing in in-house data analytics teams (64%) and purchasing third party performance data (47%). Only a quarter (24%) said they invested on outside agencies for data analysis. This may be explained by the fact mobile marketers’ job specs have altered considerably in recent years. 96% affirmed this, with 57% overall saying their role had ‘significant’ change. 62% of the executive layer polled said they had seen a dramatic increase in their focus on data and metrics.

Pinterest secretly files for IPO, seeks $12B market value
According to a Wall Street Journal report, Pinterest confidentially filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering of stock. Pinterest, as of September 2018, had more than 250 million monthly users of its app and website. Ad sales on Pinterest rose 50% to more than $700 million in 2018, a person familiar with the matter told the Journal.

Pinterest was started in 2010 at a time when the social media industry was in its infancy, but the company hasn’t developed an audience as big as those for Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube. Still, marketers like Pinterest because a platform built around people sharing images of products and creative ideas makes is well suited for ads. If Pinterest’s IPO successfully fills its coffers, the company is likely to invest more heavily in building out its offerings for marketers.

Pinterest, like every company that depends on digital advertising, needs to differentiate its content and features as much as possible from Facebook and Google, the so-called “duopoly” that dominates the online ad market. Pinterest’s U.S. ad growth is forecast to grow 30% to about $1 billion by the end of next year, according to researcher eMarketer, but it’s not clear if the company is profitable. Pinterest will have a tiny 0.7% slice of the U.S. digital ad market by next year, eMarketer estimated.

U.S. Digital Ad Spend Will Surpass Offline in 2019
eMarketer has published figures showing that total U.S. ad spend will hit $238.82 billion, with the amount spent on digital media buys surpassing that of traditional and accounting for 54.2 percent of the market. The research shows that digital ad spend will hit $129.34 billion in 2019, while traditional media buys will generate $109.48 billion, with total online media buys generating $172.29 billion in revenue by 2021.

TV ad spending will decline 2.2 percent to $70.83 billion this year, largely because there are no elections or big events, such as the Olympics or World Cup. The presidential election next year will propel TV ad spending back into positive growth, before falling again in the following years. The eMarketer report follows on the heels of an IAB report that found U.S. digital advertising revenues rose 22 percent year over year to $26.2 billion in the third quarter of 2018 and total spend throughout the first three quarters of last year totaling $75.8 billion.

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