Top 5 Predictions for Online Advertising Industry in 2013

According to Forrester Research, in 2012 U.S. online display ad spend hit $12.7 billion, and the number will only grow by 17% annually to be worth $28 billion by 2017. It is no secret that online advertising is expected to thrive, but what will be the focus areas in 2013? Here are some key factors to keep an eye out for in the year to come:

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1) Publishers will embrace native ad formats and new forms of inventory.

Advertisers and brands will look to native ad formats in a big way – such as Promoted Tweets on Twitter, Sponsored Stories on Facebook, Paid Discovery on StumbleUpon – for their well-integrated design within the website that does not negatively affect the end-user’s viewing experience. In addition, publishers will set aside areas of their site where branded content appears as an organic, native experience, instead of being sidelined into an “ad spot” that viewers might just ignore.

2)      Viewability metrics will emerge as a leading metric of effectiveness for campaigns.

While the industry is still working on a consensus in terms of a clear definition of viewable impressions, there is no question that better metrics will be a key focal point for 2013. These new measurement tools ensure that consumers view at least a portion of the delivered advertisement, allowing advertisers to focus on providing relevant content instead of using flashy ads to get the attention of the end-user. This shift will lead to better efficiency and a greater ROI.

3)      Network providers will get in on the action and look to online advertising for new revenue streams.

Consumers will continue to demand free Wi-Fi from network providers such as hotels, airports and cafes. However, there is a hefty cost in expanding bandwidth, and these providers will look to advertising to help recoup some of the revenue necessary to build out their infrastructure.

4)      Portals are going to go the way of the dinosaur.

Social networks will lead to the decline of web portals as viable options for advertising, as consumer demands shift. In 2013, advertisers will look to full-suite providers that offer premium inventory across channels to get the most bang-for-their-buck.

5)       Digital content revenues and video advertising will rise

In 2013, digital content revenues will rise significantly as companies – such as Hulu, Spotify, Dropbox, Netflix, iTunes, WSJ Digital and NYT Digital – look to meet the end-user’s demand for video and rich media. Brands and advertisers will also look to video advertising to reach their target audience, as consumers spend additional time watching online videos.

While 2012 results showed that the online advertising industry will continue to thrive, looking ahead to 2013, we will see the ecosystem move to new metrics, platforms and inventory. The companies that adapt to the ever-changing online environment will thrive in 2013 and beyond.

Everyone Wants Free Wi-Fi, but Somebody Has to Pay

It is no secret that more consumers are expecting free Wi-Fi wherever they go, including at hotels, bars, cafes, convention centers and airports. However, building out these Wi-Fi networks and providing the bandwidth needed to support today’s “always-on” consumer, armed with the latest smartphones and tablets, can be extremely costly. Take for example the $3 million cost for Caltrain to implement Wi-Fi, a much requested service from their passengers, but too much for the company to shoulder. Offering free Wi-Fi requires expensive infrastructure, and this cost has typically fallen directly on the network providers.

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As technology expands and consumers use more connected devices, the costs associated with maintaining bandwidth requirements will grow exponentially. Also, while the demand for these “free” networks continues to expand, the ways to pay for these upgrades is limited. This puts network providers in a difficult situation. On the one hand, they are at a competitive disadvantage if they do not offer free Wi-Fi, yet doing so significantly eats into their budgets and revenue. Advertising is one way to monetize their networks and recoup some of the bandwidth costs.

AdVantage Networks’ Monetization Platform (AMP) enables network providers to secure revenue from ads placed on their network. AMP seamlessly substitutes existing advertisements with more valuable advertisements, allowing the network providers to obtain a piece of the profits from advertising. For example, an advertiser can place a local ad through the hotel or airport that will be much more relevant to the consumer.

AMP’s proprietary platform does not affect the user experience at all, and focuses on maintaining the integrity of the user’s privacy, safety and security. Users can revert back to the default advertisements by opting-out of the service at any time.

Whether it’s recovering some of that initial multi-million dollar investment in infrastructure, or acquiring additional funds to build out the existing broadband network, the steady revenue stream from advertising can certainly help alleviate some of the costs network providers incur from free Wi-Fi networks. To learn more send us a note at: http://www.advn.com/contact-us/

Measuring Your Ads This Holiday Season – Are You Looking at Viewable Impressions?

This holiday season there has been a strong uptick in online sales as Black Friday spending rose 26 percent, exceeding $1 billion for the first time, according to comScore. In fact, eCommerce has grown by more than 15 percent in Q3 of 2012, resulting in the twelfth consecutive quarter of year-over-year growth. This upward trend in online shopping presents brand and direct response advertisers with a more potent than ever opportunity to reach their customers.

Despite this growing opportunity, however, the question still remains – how do you best measure the effectiveness of your ad buys?  While marketers have long understood the importance of inventory, reach, efficiency and customer segmentation, new trends in measurement such as viewable impressions are being adopted as the next generation industry standard. Although what constitutes a viewable impression is still being defined, the definition is not important. What is critical is that, at the very least, these new metrics ensure the consumer views at least a portion of the delivered advertisement. By measuring ad inventory based on viewable impressions, brands can ultimately focus on delivering the most relevant ad with confidence that they will be getting what they paid for and ultimately receive a higher ROI.

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AdVantage Networks is continually working to increase ad campaign performance on our Advantage Networks Monetization Platform (AMP). Advertisers can access premium inventory, extend their reach, and finely segment their target audience with greater efficiency and effectiveness. Future improvements will include viewability metrics as this idea moves from concept to reality. We believe AdVantage Networks is uniquely positioned to provide this next generation of ad measurement better than anyone else due to our patented AMP technology.

Now it gets interesting.  The best is yet to come!

Interested in learning more? Visit http://www.advn.com/advertisers/ to see how access to premium ad inventory on top tier sites can change the way you think about advertising.

 

 

 

Highlights from ad:tech New York

For more than a decade, ad:tech has been a convenient way to take the pulse of advertising and marketing. The New York event, in early November, was no exception, despite being held on the heels of “Superstorm Sandy.” The event brought together some of the biggest names in advertising including ad agencies, network providers and brands. Here are this year’s highlights:

  • The industry is adopting new technologies. With a number of sessions on digital advertising, content development, social media, search marketing and analytics, it is clear that the industry is exploring new technologies and ways to incorporate them into the advertising mix. Whether it’s key learnings from the display side, or new metrics, these findings go hand-in-hand in helping to maximize a well-rounded advertising strategy.
  • Transparency and customer experience is critical. No matter if a company is advertising over display, social or mobile, maintaining an honest dialogue and a strong customer experience is essential. On the “Playing to Win in 2013” panel, all four panelists agreed that “transparency and customer service” are key.
  • Engagement trumps click throughs and page views. Even though consumers are viewing an ad, it doesn’t tell you anything about engagement and effectiveness. There’s a major appetite for next-gen analytics that provide deeper, actionable insights into how consumers interact with a particular ad.
  • It’s time for a unified strategy for multiple screens. Agencies and brands typically have one business unit buying ads for mobile, another for social networks and yet another for TV. As a result, few are able to track a campaign’s effectiveness across multiple screens to understand the aggregate effect on consumers.

Suffice it to say, 2013 will be about refining methodology, applying the relevant technology, garnering deeper measurement and delivering customers the experience they seek.  It will be an exciting year ahead.

Sizing up your Ad

Online advertising presents a tremendous opportunity for brands and marketers to get their message across to consumers. According to Forrester, U.S. online advertising spend will reach $12.7 billion this year, showcasing the strength of the industry. In order to get the most out of their ad spend, companies often focus on developing creative to increase an ad campaign’s performance. However, another area that can significantly increase performance is ad placement, level of interactivity, and overall size of the ad.

Earlier this year, the IAB added a new range of formats to their standard Ad Unit Portfolio, the “Rising Stars.”  The IAB Rising Stars Display ad units allow brands to tell a bigger and bolder story utilizing a larger creative canvas with a higher degree of interactivity. Initial research on the new ad units shows the startling impact on performance, as end-users were 2.5 times more likely to interact with a Rising Stars ad unit than a standard ad unit.

The research also found that end-users spend the most time looking at Rising Star Billboard ads – ads that are at the top of the page – spending twice as much time viewing a Rising Star billboard ad versus a standard ad. This research shows the effect that ad placement, level of interactivity, and size can have on end-user interaction and ultimately performance.

Other key factors for creating a successful ad unit include avoiding unreadable fonts or colors that clash drastically. Effective display ads will also focus on a key message, keeping it simple and clear.

Brands that incorporate these best practices will more effectively reach their customers, dramatically increasing the performance of their ad campaigns.

AdVantage Networks’ Monetization Platform provides advertisers with premium ad inventory that ensures the desired audience sees the brand’s message. Advertisers can purchase their ad inventory directly from AdVantage Networks, negating the need to negotiate with multiple websites, and ensuring placement in the most appropriate spaces. Want to learn more about AdVantage Networks? Contact us at: http://www.advn.com/contact-us/

Advertising Week Sheds light on Display Advertising’s Explosive Growth

This past week saw an influx of new headlines emerge from Advertising Week, including the “rise of mobile” and the “rebirth of TV advertising.” However, one of the most prevalent topics has been the expansive growth of digital advertising, and in particular, display ads. With display ads expected to grow “over 20 percent a year for the next two years,” online advertising presents brands with a tremendous opportunity to reach a large number of their consumers.

As display advertising continues to expand, there will be new opportunities for a number of players in the industry to capitalize in the marketplace. As the digital advertising industry evolves, one key component to look for is the sharing of revenue. For instance, network providers such as ISPs, hotels and universities that provide the network infrastructure for end-users to connect to the Internet do not share in the advertising revenues passing through their networks. However, with platforms such as the AdVantange Networks Monetization Platform (AMP), these providers can obtain a part of the revenue from ads generated on their networks to improve overall advertising value for the entire ecosystem.

AMP allows network providers to monetize their networks by seamlessly replace existing advertisements, without affecting the end-user experience. This not only benefits the network providers, but it also allows advertisers to deliver more targeted and localized advertisements. For example, an advertiser looking to reach college students could work together with a university to deliver more targeted, localized advertisements. This cost-effective approach significantly extends the advertiser’s reach and efficiency.

Another key topic of discussion at Advertising Week has been over privacy, and the need for transparency and education for the consumer. AdVantage Networks focuses on maintaining the integrity of the user’s privacy, safety and security, and even offers a method for a user to revert back to the default advertisements by opting-out of the service at any time. Moreover, maintaining a streamlined user experience is critical for display advertising. There is nothing worse than receiving an irrelevant pop-up advertisement that negatively affects the browsing experience. AMP elegantly allows the subscriber to simply see different ads in the existing ad spots, while keeping the user experience completely unaffected. See an example below:

Overall, Advertising Week provided promising numbers for the future health of the ad industry, as well as some key insights into what to expect moving forward. For more information about AdVantage Networks and AMP, contact us at: http://www.advn.com/contact-us/

Connected Consumers Fuel the Hyper-Targeted Advertising Opportunity

The average American spends more than 30 hours a week online. Among some demographics, such as affluent people ages 18 to 29, the average is 40 hours. Of course, that’s no surprise for anyone who’s been to a café, airport lounge, student commons or hotel lobby, where every other person seems to be fixated on their tablet, smartphone or laptop.

Those habits create an enormous opportunity for hyper-targeted advertising, such as by location or demographic. For example, people browsing from a hotel lobby or hotel room almost certainly are business travelers or tourists. That makes it highly likely that they’ll be more interested in a banner ad for, say, a local restaurant than one for Volvo or Netflix. In fact, that’s why hotel lobbies typically have a rack filled with brochures, magazines, coupon books and other advertising vehicles for local businesses.

This strategy can be expanded to a wide variety of other locations. For example, students in a university commons are more likely interested in a banner ad with the lineup of bands and DJs playing at a local club that week than an ad for Hulu or 5 Gum. Or a café could use a similar strategy to deliver banner ads about a new dessert to patrons who are surfing while sipping.

Savvy businesses understand the value of this kind of hyper-targeted advertising. And depending on what that business is selling, it could drive an impulse purchase that otherwise wouldn’t occur. Indeed, some of the most successful digital advertising campaigns take advantage of location: get the message in front of people when they’re literally in a position to buy, and there’s a good chance that they will.

AdVantage Networks’ Monetization Platform (AMP) provides advertisers with premium inventory, reach, efficiency and customer segmentation, which enables advertisers to extend the reach of their campaign to their desired audience. AMP uses industry-standard router/proxy technologies, HTML and browser security models to detect third-party ads and replace them with local businesses’ ads.

This targeting doesn’t undermine the customer experience. For example, it doesn’t change a Web page’s formatting or modify any of the publisher content. All users see is the page they wanted and an ad that’s relevant to them.

Intrigued? Visit http://www.advn.com/advertisers/ to learn more about how to maximize the reach and effectiveness of every advertising dollar. Hyper targeting by location and demographic is easier and more convenient than you might think.