Andy Grove, ex-CEO of Intel, once noted that it can be difficult to recognize industry inflection points in the midst of a shift, much less forecast them. In 2007, when Apple and Android released smartphones and Facebook, Twitter and Amazon Web Services hit their strides, few saw these as the triggers for the mobile revolution and the end of the computer as our primary technology device. The ad industry, however, has been anticipating (and endlessly discussing) one of its own watershed moments for years. Now, in 2019, digital ad spending in the U.S. is set to exceed traditional—without, notably, eclipsing TV spend which continues to hold steady at $70+billion, even in a non-Olympics/-World Cup year.
According to eMarketer, total digital ad spend in the U.S. will grow 19% to $129.34 billion this year, reaching more than 50% of total spend for the first time. This makes it increasingly important for marketers, agencies, ad-tech firms, etc. to follow best practices for video and TV advertising. Here are a few from eMarketer’s new report, along with insights from other industry sources.
Welcome to the Triopoly and the Emergence of Ecommerce as an Advertising Channel
For the first time since the emergence of the duopoly, Facebook and Google are experiencing declines in their ad market shares (37.2% from 38.2% and 21.8% from 22.1% respectively) thanks to the 50% growth of Amazon’s ad business. In fact, Amazon’s ad successes will drive other retailers to explore the potential of ecommerce as an advertising channel. And, because Google and Amazon are leaders in voice and visual search, marketers should be ready to mine opportunities there, not for advertising on Alexa or Google Home, but for extracting value from user queries on them. Finally, regarding the value of user activity, Amazon’s behavioral and purchase data offers advertisers access to information once available only at retailers’ discretion. Making use of it in innovative ways should be a marketing imperative.
Finding the Right Balance between Data Mining and Privacy Protection
That kind of innovation will have to occur within certain parameters given the implementation of the EU’s GDPR (general data protection regulation) and consumers’ growing concerns about personal privacy. While advertisers will be able to mine the rich data sources that inform the best ad campaigns, brands will need to honor the principles of GDPR to maintain consumer trust. In the short term, this will revolve around consumer opt-ins and permissions, being transparent about how location data is used and establishing guidelines for first-party targeting.
Flourishing in an All-Screen Environment
While advertisers haven’t kept pace with consumers’ uptake of connected TV (CTV) and over-the-top (OTT) streaming so far, they are starting to see more clearly how these platforms provide the best of both the TV and digital worlds. As such, the respondents to eMarketer’s Digital Video Best Practices survey advised marketers to begin incorporating CTV into linear ad buys going forward. Of course, that effort will be enhanced by a creative asset workflow that allows ads to be managed and distributed by one platform that get the right type of ad to the right screen with Talent & Rights fully integrated. By the right “type” of ad, eMarketer means the right formatting and the right context for the ad’s message.