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Mobile Owns the Lion’s Share of Digital Advertising

By Charles Golvin | October 04, 2018 | 0 Comments

MarketingDigital Marketing Strategy and Execution

Source: by Joshua Hoehne on Unsplash

Hold the phone – mobile advertising has become the core of the digital advertising industry.   According to PWC’s 2017 IAB Internet Advertising report, mobile accounted for roughly 57% of the $88 billion in US digital ad spend. This represents an increase of 36% over the prior year.

Given this continuing trend line, how should marketing leaders align their approach with this growth as we head into the peak Q4 ad spend season?


  • Pay special attention to video. Mobile video ad spend hit $6.2 billion in 2017, up 54% from the prior year.  According to Nielsen’s Q1 2018 Total Audience Report, adults 18-34 now spend an average of more than 22 minutes per day using video focused apps or websites on mobile devices.  Social media and gaming apps offer additional opportunities to use video ads to get in front of consumers.
  • Think conversational. If TV is ‘lean back’ and desktop is ‘lean forward’ then mobile is (with apologies to Sheryl Sandberg) ‘lean way in’ — mobile is by far the most interactive medium. Supplement your brand advertising with invitations to engage customers in real-time dialog, across a variety of messaging channels. Recognize that these conversations will demand that you understand natural language, both spoken and typed. You need to think beyond just keywords.


  • Throw money haphazardly at mobile media budgets. Ensure first that the key components of your mobile strategy are in order. That means: Your website is optimized for mobile devices (and “it’s responsive” isn’t necessarily sufficient); You allow customers to reach you via the form of messaging that they prefer, from SMS to Facebook Messenger (and maybe WhatsApp, WeChat, and/or LINE if your audience is international). And it definitely means that you have a full-featured mobile analytics package informing your performance dashboard.
  • Take your eye off the ball when it comes to fraud and viewability. The mobile ad environment is fertile ground for bad actors.  Pay close attention to how bot traffic affects your programs, mitigate fraud using third-party ad verification services, and don’t rely solely on technology providers to identify and combat fraud.  For more, Gartner clients should read Understand and Mitigate Advertising Fraud.

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