According to the latest research from eMarketer, mobile ad spending in the US will surpass desktop for the first time this year, reaching $30 billion and accounting for 52% of all digital ad spending. By 2019, mobile ad spending will more than double, reaching $65 billion, and will account for almost three-quarters of total digital ad spend.
Those numbers sound high, but there’s still a big gap between advertising dollars and the amount of time users are currently spending on mobile devices. It’s been the year of mobile for the last three years at least, but for many marketers, mobile campaigns haven’t been living up to expectations, hence the persistent gap.
Mobile advertising has unique challenges, making it more difficult for advertisers to get the results they’re looking for. But by addressing those specific challenges, you can get more out of mobile before the rest of the marketplace catches up, reaching your audience where they’re spending time right now.
Targeting and Mobile Measurement
In the desktop world, marketers rely on cookies for most audience targeting. Unfortunately, as we all know, tracking user behavior and identifying specific audience segments is a different ballgame in the mobile space. This is one of the roadblocks preventing many marketers from furthering their investments.
You can target specific mobile users, but not using the same tried and true methods, which meakes one of the primary methods for optimizing ad campaigns much more difficult. If you can’t hone in on that one user, how are you supposed to drive performance?
Fortunately, you can still invest in the single biggest driver of performance for both desktop and mobile campaigns: creative.
Mobile Creative Matters More
When developing mobile campaigns, advertisers often think of creative an afterthought, but it’s a key driver of performance, even with the limited real estate provided by small screens. And mobile creative is much easier to get wrong than desktop.
The easiest way to lift performance with desktop advertising to invest in creative, and the same is true for mobile. No matter how seasoned a creative team is, impossible to know which creative concept is going to be the most effective at the launch of a campaign.
Testing big concepts for highly differentiated mobile ads (and smaller variations within concepts) is the only way to definitely answer the question of whether any particular ad is likely to be effective.
Mobile advertising is growing rapidly, though there’s still a long way to go. If you can get there before your competitors, you’ll be well-placed to break through the noise and take advantage of the green field ahead of us.