IAB CEO Randall Rothenberg Targets The Truth

What does the Interactive Advertising Bureau do well -- and what does it need to do better? IAB CEO Randall Rothenberg raised the question Sunday evening to kickstart the Annual Leadership Meeting in Palm Desert, California. The answers ranged from topics such as ad blocking to mobile to data and targeting on a variety of devices.

Walker Jacobs, COO of Wikia, got the conversation rolling, immediately turning the topic to ad blocking. Jacobs cited load times created by ad serving's daisy chain, and the fact that mobile users resent paying for data to deliver ads, as main reasons for the growth in ad blocking.

The IAB's research shows the two biggest reasons consumer download ad-blocking software is to protect themselves against malware and virus in advertisements, and the lack of speed, especially on mobile devices, where data plans are costly.

While the IAB has done a lot of work in this area, one unidentified attendee stood up to say he still thinks the organization "sucks" at getting it right.

The challenge has been mostly with the two additional types of companies required to serve ads on mobile, compared with desktop: handset makers and telecommunications networks. "Apple is a member of ours, but they have participated in few, if any, standards-setting exercises … and it limits what a trade association can do," Rothenberg says. "The telecommunications networks are the gatekeepers to a lot of the environment and the advertising is not their business," he says -- with one caveat, Verizon's recent AOL acquisition.

eMarketer estimates the U.S. mobile ad market will grow to $42.01 billion, and the U.S. mobile display advertising revenue will reach $21.5 billion in 2016, rising to $26.2 billion in 2017. Mobile search ad spend in the U.S. will reach $18.5 billion in 2016, up to $22.18 billion in 2017, and $25.11 billion in 2018.

One attendee did thank Rothenberg for the Tech Lab, a separate association to house technical standards, and the newly approved West Coast office, which Rothenberg hopes to see open this year.

 

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7 comments about "IAB CEO Randall Rothenberg Targets The Truth".
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  1. Brian Nakamoto from Tightrope Interactive, Inc., January 27, 2016 at 6:10 p.m.

    "Apple is a member of ours, but they have participated in few, if any, standards-setting exercises … and it limits what a trade association can do," Rothenberg says.

    This remark doesn't make sense at face value without any additional context. How is the IAB limited by Apple's lack of participation given that the IAB's guidelines are centered around display ads?

  2. Randall Tinfow from CLICK-VIDEO LLC replied, January 28, 2016 at 12:58 p.m.

    The IAB provides specs for display video and pre-mid-post-roll video advertising as well as static and animated display ads.  It's the segment of the business that is growing fastest. Updated spec announced here:

    http://www.iab.com/news/vast-4-0-arrives-championing-the-technology-behind-the-growth-of-digital-video-advertising/

  3. Laurie Sullivan from lauriesullivan replied, January 28, 2016 at 6:16 p.m.

    Brian, Paraphrasing, Rothenberg meant that Apple rarely participates in standards groups, which makes it difficult. I do not attend the meetings, so I cannot confirm Apple's participation. I'm just reporting on what was said.

  4. Randall Tinfow from CLICK-VIDEO LLC, January 28, 2016 at 12:52 p.m.

    Rothenberg and Co keep saying that load times and data cost are the primary motivators for ad blocking.  That's just not true, and until they get it right the IAB is doing a disservice to its membership by saying,  "Ad blocking is evil.  We just need to make lower weight ads that are cooler."  Sorry, that will never work.

    The Teads Research sponsored "Why People Block Ads," 
    http://adage.com/article/digital/study-drives-consumers-ad-blockers/302349/, hits the bullseye. It's all about the interruption of experience.  Teads shows it empirically, backing up what we see anecdotally in the field.

    The mouthpiece of the industry needs to spend some time talking to users before he spews more mis-direction.  If I sound as annoyed as someone who watched a 30 second preroll in front of a 52 second video, that's because . . .




  5. Mike Einstein from the Brothers Einstein, January 28, 2016 at 5:03 p.m.

    Ad blocking is the online version of the DVR.  The fact that we're willing to pay more to avoid the ads on TV should tell the idiots at IAB something about the truth.  If we were given the option to receive no ads at all, we'd all sign up -- except for the poor souls who buy and sell this crap.  And most of them would opt out, too.

  6. Randall Tinfow from CLICK-VIDEO LLC, January 28, 2016 at 5:10 p.m.

    Important to add that bandwidth considerations are far more important outside of the U.S., particularly in Latin America, because of limited availability and cost.

  7. Brian Nakamoto from Tightrope Interactive, Inc., January 29, 2016 at 9:23 p.m.

    Paraphrasing, Rothenberg meant that Apple rarely participates in standards groups, which makes it difficult.


    Apple participates in several standards groups. :) I speculate that Apple doesn't participate in IAB Tech Lab because they're not in the ad tech business. (iAds was superficial.) Apple's platforms already support standards that can be used by ad tech. However, I doubt they'll add anymore special consideration for advertising beyond Advertising Identifiers.