Mobile Ad Spends – A Growth Story Like None Other

From a medium of marketing that was usually an afterthought to the current scenario, mobile has emerged as the centre piece of digital communication. It is pegged to see the fastest YoY growth, as far as ad spends go, in the coming years.

Exponential growth in smartphone consumption and increased data speeds are at the core of it. As per Emarketer data, the number of smartphones would increase to 337 million by the year end – the highest estimated growth rate posted by any country in the world. The report also predicts that the number of smartphone users in India would reach 490.9 million by 2022 – an increase of 60% over 2017 numbers.

As for why the picture did not look as rosy so far, Anita Nayyar expresses, “The potential of mobile especially for advertising has not been optimized given the infrastructure challenges across the country.”

True that slow data speed and call drops were constant complaints, however, the network operators are not leaving any stone unturned to take corrective measures. That has played a major role in changing the demand-supply equation as far as mobile advertising goes, and there are other reasons too! Mayoori Kango opines, “For a long time mobile in India was a deflationary market; as the amount of demand was lesser compared to inventory; there were also issues with the type of inventory and the general lack of understanding of the criticality of the medium by advertisers. However, the last two years have changed the game. The numbers are huge now. Mobile and platforms are no more just a tick box but very important to all advertiser as every kind of individual across geographies is online and more so with each passing month.”

Going back to numbers, double-digit growth for mobile marketing is predicted over the next few years. Estimates are that by 2021, mobile will account for just under 62.0% of digital ad spending of $2.80 billion.

With not only youngsters but also people who did not consume Internet due to dependency on computers accessing Net on mobile now, new vistas have opened. Brands are acknowledging this and getting on the mobile bandwagon. Sahil Shah expresses, “Digital = Mobile in my view. More than 85% of Internet consumption in India is on mobile. The new India (Bharat) that is getting on digital now, is almost 98% mobile and that is the way the whole country is going to be.”

Vishal Chinchankar estimates that more three fourth of digital ad spend is now mobile focused. He states, “Mobile’s share in total digital ad spend is 78 per cent. This year mobile continues to grow at a healthy pace and the category is expected to maintain a growth rate of 50-55%. We can truly call ourselves as a mobile 1st country.”

With eyeballs already there on mobile, and arguably smartphone becoming the first screen among millennials soon, opportunities are immense, and brands are acknowledging it. Kango submits, “The top spenders of Adex are now wanting to give a fair share to medium. This will lead to a rise in demand and of course rise in prices.”

Standardisation in ad formats and measurements across the mobile ecosystem are the need of the hour now. Brands, too, need to treat mobile creative as a separate form of advertising and not as the shorter version of their television commercial only. This, in turn, would make mobile advertising more engaging and standardized, getting more and more brands on board.

We discuss this and more at TMMS 2018.

Read Why marketers are unfazed by increase in ad rates.


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