The benefits of RTB (real-time bidding) are something that’s often debated in marketing circles, as though it has obvious advantages in allowing advertisers to name their price for specific users RTB is criticised for relying on poor ad inventory and resulting in inflated prices.
But regardless of where you stand on the relative pros and cons of RTB, it’s fair to say that the technology has fundamentally altered the way that online advertising is bought and sold.
Our new Online Advertisers Survey Report asked 650 advertisers and agencies about the benefits of real-time bidding and found that more than half of advertisers see improved performance (62%) as the main advantage.
This was followed by reduced wastage (54%), lower cost per acquisition (53%) and better targeting capabilities (46%).
Here are some of the most interesting digital marketing statistics we've seen this week.
Stats include display advertising, content marketing, Facebook ads, omnichannel retailing and the continued growth of ecommerce sales.
For more digital marketing stats, check out our Internet Statistics Compendium.
Almost two-thirds of businesses (64%) increased their spending on online display advertising this year, while just 14% decreased their level of investment in this channel.
This marks a trend of increasing spend as the proportion of advertisers having increased their budgets for display advertising has gone up from 57% to 64% since 2009.
While this trend reflects the stabilised economy in 2013 compared to 2009, it also highlights increased confidence among advertisers and agencies that online display advertising is delivering value, largely driven by more efficient technology and better understanding of the channel’s performance resulting from improved attribution.
The findings come from the new Econsultancy Online Advertisers Survey Report, published in association with Rubicon Project.
Over 100 senior marketers attended our inaugural roundtable event in Hong Kong last month.
They deftly explored and shared nimble ways to utilise the very latest digital marketing ideas and techniques in order to better equip themselves for their future endeavours.
Some were intent on making stronger inroads into mainland China, others were planning on taking full advantage of the small but also highly lucrative local Hong Kong marketplace (a jewel in the China crown), and for a fair number it was to better hone their abilities and skills to market across the whole APAC region.
Late last year, the Media Rating Council (MRC) said it would be premature for online advertising to transact on 'viewable impressions'.
The findings of our own research show why we couldn't agree more.
'Viewability' was a hot topic in online display in 2012 and that looks set to continue this year. Ad Age put out an article a couple of weeks ago about viewability with the subtitle “lots of debate, little action”.
But, while viewable impressions as a measurement metric make sense in theory, the practical application is complicated and potentially dangerous to the short-term health of the industry for both sellers and buyers.
Online advertising continues to grow by leaps and bounds, but that doesn't mean that life is easy for players in the digital ad ecosystem. In fact, the thriving online ad economy is increasingly complicated.
Unfortunately, things are only going to get more complicated. Need evidence? Look no further than last week's announcement that one of the most popular browser makers, Mozilla, will begin blocking cookies from third-party ad networks by default in Firefox 22.
Real-time bidding (RTB) is a small, but rapidly growing part of the overall display advertising market, which is billed as a way of giving agencies and advertisers better control of their ad buys and costs.
Last year eMarketer predicted that RTB spend in the US will reach $7.1bn by 2016 - nearly a third of the display ad market - up from $1.9bn in 2012.
However RTB also receives criticism for being too complicated, overly expensive and offering poor quality inventory.
With this in mind, AdMonsters and PubMatic have published a new report that examines publisher attitudes towards RTB.
AdMonsters distributed an online survey to its European publisher contacts and carried out several in-depth interviews with experienced RTB users in both the US and Europe.
Like it or not, social networks are now a vital part of our lives, and whether we're keeping in touch or consuming news or trends, most people wear a number of caps when socially not-working.
So how do we feel about the idea of Big Brother 'helping' with these daily routines?
Internet advertising has seen a rapid proliferation over the last decade and in 2012 is predicted to outrank print ads, becoming the second-biggest global media category after TV.
The downside of this explosive growth is that consumers are becoming overwhelmed with commercial messages, making it increasingly difficult to get what’s relevant, important and interesting for them.
As such, it has never been more important for brands to cut through the advertising clutter and reach the right digital audience.
Over time, advertising spend has held a close correlation with consumer behaviour. A trend that has been consistent across print, TV, the web and now even Facebook.
However, one channel has proved incongruous with the rest: mobile. Report after report points to consumers worldwide spending more time on their mobile devices.
In Europe, the mobile revolution is well under way, with premium publishers typically generating 50% of their traffic through their mobile sites.
Despite this, mobile display only accounts for 6% of the display advertising spend in UK and lower in the rest of Europe.
As consumers spend more time on their mobile devices, it makes sense that brand marketers look for effective ways to capitalise on the high level of consumer engagement with the channel. But as we continue to wait for mobile display advertising spend to increase we all begin to wonder: will marketers ever be able to monetize mobile display effectively?
Can the publisher compete with the usual suspects like Google, Facebook and Twiter? Will rich media be the knight in shining armour that can save mobile?