Tripling Down: Global Growth Will Supercharge Mobile Ad Market By 2016
The mobile share of digital ad revenues in the U.S. will reach 11% by 2016, but in select global markets, these platforms are poised to dominate the digital scene in very short order. A new Yankee Report finds that overall global mobile ad spend will increase by a staggering three and a half times in the next four years. And a considerable amount of that expansion will be outside the U.S. Yankee Group projects that revenues for Brazil, India and China combined will reach $6 billion in 2016 as devices supersede the desktop Internet.
In The Yankee Group report, "Mobile Advertising Forecast 2012: Marketing Steps Through the Looking-Glass," the company is unambiguous in its view that mobile platforms will be even more central to digital media and marketing overseas than they are here.
"Yankee Group identifies mobility as the primary catalyst for disruptive change, and advertising is a prime example," writes Jason Armitage, principal analyst, Yankee Group, in the report. "The initial impulse of marketers was to consider mobile a simple extension of the Web and its advertising forms." He adds: "But that approach is no longer sustainable for a platform topping 6 billion subscriptions."
While some regions like India, China and Brazil will find their digital markets dominated quickly by mobile devices, advanced mobile regions like the U.S. will see another sweet spot -- tablets. According to Yankee Group’s projections, the ad spend targeted to tablets will be more than twice that of the spend targeting smartphones. The report cites high click-through rates on tablet ads and instances of sold-out inventory. Tablet owners are also more likely to click on ads than smartphone users.
The key to mobile advertising’s future, however, is overcoming its ongoing data problem. That is, Armitage cites the problems marketers have experienced in getting reliable and consistent data on users. Apps are helping to correct this weakness, as users have been willing to engage with the ads and exchange information for utility. In the first quarter of 2012, 22% of smartphone users and 27% of tablet users clicked through on an in-app ad. Ultimately, the emergence of app platforms is good news for marketers, the report finds, because it allows for more scalable, standardized ad units across geographic regions and provides usage and profile data that enhances targeting.