Mobile advertising is kind of a big deal. During last year the mobile ad spend in the US alone rose to a whopping 87 billion USD and in just a bit, by 2023 that number is expected to balloon to a cool 146. Furthermore, according to eMarketer, last year was actually a huge win for the mobile: for the first time US adults were recorded spending more time consuming media on mobile devices than TV. And if you know anything about the US adult population and their TVs – you know that’s a huge deal. To put a figure on it: Up to 70% of web traffic happens on a mobile device. So just as we find ourselves in the new decade, it’s imperative to know all of the newest mobile tech trends that are going to guide us the right to success. Technology is evolving faster than ever, consumers’ preferences are shifting left and right, brand safety concerns are rapidly gaining speed, not to mention the overall ambiance these days perfectly fits the very accurate “Innovate or die” approach to marketing. Thus, let’s innovate: here’s a list of top in-app advertising trends and ideas that will help you to survive this decade, or at the very least 2020.
Let’s just start with this one, shall we? There are a lot of articles out there with the Mobile Apps vs. Mobile App made-up war. If you can, do both, but, honestly, it’s not really a contest: according to eMarketer’s research people spend 90% of their mobile time in apps vs. the mobile web. Thus, this is a sort of decision that you can call a “no brainer”. And, mind you, app usage is still growing at a steady rate with the projected number of app downloads to reach 258 billion by 2022, so a whopping 45% increase in just 5 years. And this sort of unprecedented popularity is understandable. Mobile web is rather limited and cannot offer app sort of interaction with the use of GPS, camera, notifications, etc. Being installed right on the smartphone apps are, of course, much faster, there’s no frustration and aggravation connected to apps due to problems with content loading, the app just pulls everything up from files on the mobile. Plus, some apps run even without an Internet connection, which is unachievable for the mobile web. And, the most hated thing about the mobile web – the sites that aren’t optimized for mobile. Mobile-friendly is a must.
Cover your bases
General knowledge matters. That is just a fact; we cannot be seriously discussing the 2020 in-app trends without a strong grasp on the basics of in-app advertising. This isn’t one of those ‘Kids these days…’ lectures, by all means, it’s not. But, let’s just all remember that the era of the ‘move fast break things’ was not a good one, speedy decision-making process gaslighted with the absolute lack of general knowledge did, in fact, break a lot of things. And during this same era, Kent State University professors gave us unsettling statistics on the fact ‘Paris is the capital of France’. In a questionnaire that compared the general knowledge of college students in 1980 vs 2012 that Paris fact went from 6th in terms of questions answered correctly to 23rd. So, how about we slow down and read? When it comes to in-app, there are a lot of very informative sites and blogs. You can go ahead and check out the admixer.com blog post with a detailed guide on in-app advertising. You can refresh your knowledge on in-app in general and look closely at why you should invest in it, what are the benefits, look at the crucial decision-making statistics, etc. Now, that having been said, let’s move on to the trends!
The anti-fraud trend
Last year was bad safety-wise for everyone – advertisers, publishers, and consumers. Data breaches, fraudulent activities eating up huge chunks of ad spend, ad stacking and spoofing, the background traffic and just a ridiculous amount of bots that are getting way too sophisticated and are able to easily generate fake traffic, clicks, and installs are all here working hard to dismiss our work. There’s also click fraud and retargeting fraud and, of course, invalid traffic (GIVT / SIVT). And, in this war, you have to have a good grasp on what you are up against and have a deep knowledge of the most common forms of mobile ad fraud that are affecting your campaigns on a daily basis. Partnering-up with ad networks, ad-servers, DSPs that make brand protection their mission and put your safety first is always a great idea. The company you plan to partner-up with has to have a whole brand protection plan with the use of sophisticated cutting-edge tech, human monitoring, and definitely fraud detection partners. You should be able to easily prevent bidding on bot traffic, apply the banner verification, pin-point fraudulent apps, and any other unsafe inventory. Additionally, both the in-app demand and sell sides can use Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) which certifies companies that follow the Certified Against Fraud Guidelines and help to eliminate fraudulent digital advertising traffic and fight ad-supported Internet piracy.
Rich media in-app trend
Rich media ads are extremely engaging. The attention-grabbing 360-degree ads, the mobile cube ones, the AR and 3D, the interactive, the playable, the ones that expand, float, appear out of nowhere – all of them are meant to entrain, educate and just deliver brands message in a fun playful way. eMarketer report shows an astonishing consumer’s engagement numbers as rich media ads outperform static ones by 267% on CTR. Just over the last five years, we’ve seen a surge in the rich media advertising – the ad spending went from 3.71 billion to a jaw-dropping 12.19. The trending began right after we’ve welcomed HTML5 with open arms that have been extremely popular ever since. This glorious soft solution transformed our “heavy” website-crashing rich media ads into the digital equivalent of the phrase “light as a feather”, allowing for creativity boost and effortless delivery of ads in any browser on mobile or desktop. The advice here is rather simple: opt for a professional rich media ad server and you’ll have all of the rich media benefits working on your side.
The rewarded video ad trend
Regarded ads are the new big step in the history of mobile advertisement evolution. These sort of incentivized ads are the piece makers between the advertisers and the sick of ads crowds armed with ad blockers. Giving the user a choice to watch or refuse an ad is a good idea, promising a reward for the time spent watching the ad is a brilliant one. Moreover, apps are willingly downloaded, so an extra life in a game, or a free app trial, a coupon or an online store virtual cash – whatever the reward is, it is always content-related and welcomed. Rewarded ads are the perfect example of the “win-win-win” situation for everyone involved – they are loved by advertisers, publishers and are irresistible for the customers. These ads show higher retention and very promising statistics: a case study published a while ago revealed how players were engaging with the rewarded in-app ads. The study showed that 75% of players were watching ads daily, driving $0.06 per player in daily ad revenue. Moreover, the stats stood the test of time and within a year 75-80% of customers were still watching rewarded ads. Rewarded ads make customers feel like they are getting something out of the ad while publishers and advertisers see the highest view-through or completion rates, so it is definitely a win-win-win.
The 5G trend
People (yes, Millennials, we’re looking at you) suffer from “load range” when download speeds are longer than a minute. A study came out last year that showed it takes up to a minute to enrage a person looking at their phones waiting for content to download. So, 5G should get everyone excited. First and foremost, 5G equals faster load speeds, hence the mobile digital advertising opportunities will surge. Boost in loading speeds means there’s heaps more content coming to mobile and leveling out the field for new ad opportunities, we can expect higher data speeds and improvements in geo-capabilities, hence greater targeting options. Advertisers will be able to deliver location-based data to millions of devices simultaneously. And, of course, 5G will undoubtedly better the all-round favorites – AR and VR since data is rendered in real-time new speeds will offer a heightened experience for users. 5G is revolutionary and with the promised load times 20 times faster than its predecessor we can all brace ourselves for bigger better things.