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Take Advantage of Advertising’s Greatest Opportunity This Christmas — Mobile In-App

Home » Blog » Take Advantage of Advertising’s Greatest Opportunity This Christmas — Mobile In-App
Posted by Courtney Reich on October 23, 2017
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As we approach the biggest consumer spending season of the year, brands and agencies cannot ignore the power of mobile. Mobile usage has been on the rise for years, and time spent on mobile now surpasses time spent on a desktop/laptop computer by more than one hour per day in the US.1 As a result, consumers will be using their mobile devices this Christmas shopping season to browse, research and purchase more than ever before.

This shift to mobile presents the greatest opportunity in the advertising world. So, as companies around the world increase their ad spending this holiday season, savvy advertisers should utilize mobile to get seen at impressive scale.

Don't Just Go Mobile, Go In-App

Apps are the fuel for the global explosion in mobile usage. Over 80% of mobile time worldwide is spent in-app.2 Users in the US are especially app-obsessed, spending 90% of their smartphone time in-app — an increase of ten minutes per day from last year. Meanwhile, smartphone time spent with mobile web remains steady at around 30 minutes per day.3

In-app’s domination of mobile time is especially relevant for advertisers during the holidays, as many of the countries with the highest consumer spending during the Christmas shopping season spend over 80% of their mobile minutes in-app — including the US (90%), Germany (89%), Italy (87%) and France (87%).4

In-App Share of Total Mobile Minutes in Top Markets

As highlighted in our Q2 2017 Global Trends in Mobile Advertising report, ad spending is already following consumers to in-app. In Q2 2017, in-app’s share of mobile ad spending reached a new record high on the Smaato platform, accounting for 94% of total mobile ad spending versus mobile web’s 6% share. In-app has also consistently picked up significant mobile ad spending share points over mobile web in each quarter over the past year.

In-App vs. Mobile Web Share of Worldwide Mobile Ad Spending

Since Q2 2016, in-app gained a total of nearly 20 mobile ad spending share points. By region, the Americas region saw the highest in-app share of mobile ad spending in Q2 2017 (97%), exceeding the global average by three points. This is a big change from one year ago, when Americas’ in-app ad spending share lagged behind all other regions.

In-App vs. Mobile Web Share of Mobile Ad Spending by Region

The Americas’ region mobile in-app ad spending share increases were driven by the US, where high smartphone user penetration (97%) met sharply-rising consumer time in mobile apps.5 In 2017, the average US adult will spend an average of 3 hours and 8 minutes per day using mobile apps — a jump of 11 minutes per day over the previous year.6

In-App Advantages for Advertisers

It’s not just shifting consumer attention that is driving mobile ad spending budgets toward in-app. The in-app environment offers advertisers unprecedented user tracking and conversion measurement capabilities available in no previous advertising medium.

The cookie, made famous in the desktop online world, is rapidly becoming a thing of the past — especially as new European privacy regulations (GDPR) will go into effect in May 2018. Mobile in-app’s already cookie-less environment can therefore offer highly-accurate device targeting and traffic quality measurement that desktop and mobile web simply cannot.

In-app ad placement can help ensure that advertisers reliably get their campaigns to their ideal audiences. An important component of this more reliable and precise targeting is the accurate location data provided within the in-app environment. Location unlocks many rich layers of data that advertisers can harness for geotargeting purposes, such as weather and local events.

Since in-app ads can be designed and implemented seamlessly, they enrich in-app content and engage the user — and more engagement means higher conversions for in-app over mobile web ads.

Engage Holiday Shoppers With In-App Video

To maximize the effectiveness and cost-efficiency of holiday campaigns, advertisers should consider utilizing in-app video. Consumers give their undivided attention to mobile video at twice the rate they do for TV, and mobile apps are the preferred way to access top content categories such as games, social media and entertainment.7

Brand marketers reported in a recent US survey that they choose mobile video ad formats because of their ability to increase brand awareness (44%), reach more targeted audiences (34%) and increase the favorability of their brand (26%).8

As mobile video ads take full advantage of the interactivity of mobile and offer high consumer engagement, it’s not surprising that mobile video is taking off. Mobile video ad requests are currently skyrocketing on the Smaato platform — increasing +723% so far this year, and we expect further impressive in-app video ad growth throughout the holiday season.

Mobile Video Ad Request Growth

The proof is in the Christmas pudding — consumers are not only moving to mobile, they are moving in-app. And one of the most effective ways to engage these app-first consumers is through in-app video. Advertisers should take advantage of this under-explored ad format to get seen on consumers’ mobile screens this holiday season.

As the leading in-app advertising expert, Smaato’s team of talented account managers knows how to optimize the effectiveness and cost-efficiency of holiday ad campaigns. And with our new pre-packaged Open Deals, it is even easier to conduct precision traffic targeting for ensuring your holiday ads are viewed by the right audience — advertisers can choose from pre-packaged deals such as High Completion Rate Video, VPAID, Premium Gaming, Shopping and more.

Contact a Smaato Account Manager today to learn more and begin optimizing your own in-app holiday ad campaign.


eMarketer, March 2017
comScore, Sept 2017
3 eMarketer, Sept 2017
comScore, Sept 2017
 eMarketer, March 2017
 eMarketer, Sept 2017
 Vungle, 2017
eMarketer, Sept 2016

Written by Courtney Reich

Content Marketing Associate @ Smaato

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