Last year, the amount of money spent on mobile advertising surpassed £1bn for the first time. In 2014, the focus on mobile has intensified and the associated budgets have continued skywards. According to eMarketer, it may even surpass the £2bn mark before we’ve finished eating turkey sandwiches and turn our attention to the New Year.
Boiling these figures down into something more digestible, what this means is that the percentage of total media advertising spend on mobile devices will be broadly similar to what is spent on newspaper advertising (c. 13.5%). This has risen from just 3.9% in 2012. And within the £7bn ‘digital’ segment of the advertising market, there’s a chance that mobiles may take a third of the total expenditure during 2014.
Of course, bearing in mind that 68% of the UK’s population uses a smartphone and 69% of them use it to go online every day, it should come as no shock that big money is being thrown at the medium. But there’s one stand-out marketing element that is driving this expenditure: Video.
In the first half of 2014, mobile video ad spend has tripled to £63.9 million. Modest thought this is in comparison to the total marketing expenditure on mobile, it’s the impact of video which allows it to punch above its weight. For example, we are a nation of social sharers who disseminate vast amounts of content to social media platforms. Indeed, YouTube – which pulls in over 1bn unique users a month – can be considered a social network on its own.
A study by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) found that 92% of consumers who view video on mobile devices share that content with others and bear in mind 40% of views on YouTube in the UK occur via mobiles. Broadly speaking, this sharing is done to social media, but messaging apps like WhatsApp (itself owned by Facebook) are increasingly important in this area. The IAB notes that £1 in every £5 of internet and mobile display ads goes on video content.
Mobile video marketing is a growing sector too, driven by people’s increasing desire for ‘on demand’ services and the roll-out of 4G networks across the UK. Nielsen research suggests that 64% of marketers expect video to dominate their content marketing strategies in the future and Cisco goes even further, saying that by 2017 video will account for 69% of internet traffic.
Essentially, video that has been optimised for mobiles is driving marketing. Whilst written content remains hugely important – for SEO apart from anything else – marketers should be embracing video’s potential, now. The costs of creating high quality video continue to fall and technology continues to evolve to make it easy to produce something that looks slick and will only elevate a brand’s profile.
Combined with mobile-friendly technology like a responsive website and YouTube hosting, brands only stand to benefit from embracing video.