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Technology & Data contribute to Display Ads’ double digit growth in 2013

Nielsen’s quarterly Global AdView Pulse report indicates that Display Internet advertising, though measured in a smaller subset of countries, grew a significant 26.3 percent for the first quarter of 2013. The report stated that display internet ad growth was particularly impressive in the Asia-Pacific with 33.2 per cent. For domain experts such as Rohit Kumar, MD – South East Asia, Sociomantic Labs, APAC ad spend in display advertising is only going to increase further as the industry becomes more “accountable, transparent and results-driven”.

“We are only scratching the surface at the moment. In the future, we will see technology enabling advertisers to have a single view of their customers across platforms and devices. At Sociomantic, we are able to use our technology and bidding algorithms to run display ads across desktop, mobile, and even on Facebook through its ad exchange, FBX. More display inventory will follow,” Mr Kumar pointed out in a conversation with DMA.

As is known, Skype and Twitter too have announced their intentions to launch display ad exchanges. For industry specialists such as Mr Kumar, in a few years’ time, even TV ads could conceivably be bought through a technology platform that leverages advertisers’ data. “In the end, display is a significant channel for advertisers because it allows them to use their own proprietary data to reach individual users with custom-tailored messages —something very few other channels can offer at scale,” he said.

Display advertising has come a long way since October 25, 1994, the day when the world saw the first-ever display ad. Almost 20 years later, display advertising is more transparent, accountable and customisable than ever before, making it possible for advertisers to serve the right ad to the right user at the right time.

Rohit Kumar, Sociomantic Labs

According to Mr Kumar, much of what’s driving display at the moment comes down to technology and data. He observed, “Today it’s possible to take a channel like display advertising — which has historically been a creative medium — and through technologies like real-time bidding (RTB) apply the science needed to drive performance on par with search advertising. Secondly, data is playing a critical role in the growth of display. Advertisers are able to bring their data into the media buying process to precision-target and individually personalise their advertising.”

Traditionally content has been a proxy of intent, but this is changing — the emergence of RTB coupled with the advertiser’s own data means that granular audience segments can now be purchased in real time and at scale. Asia Pacific is going through the same wave of innovation that the UK and the USA witnessed two years ago. “Advertisers here see programmatic media buying as the future, and for us at Sociomantic this is a strategic region for growth, which is why we have opened offices in Mumbai and Singapore,” added Mr Kumar.

In comparison to the growth that internet display advertising has seen, in the first quarter of 2013 even though television remained the dominant media type in terms of advertising investments, economic problems made an impact on the medium in markets such as Europe, where in Q1 2013, TV advertising dropped by 2.9 percent.

Decreases in print advertising continued slowly, as both spending in magazines and newspapers both declined in the first quarter (-2.8 per cent and -4.7 per cent respectively). Newspaper ad spend decreased in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific, while magazine ad spending decreased in Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Middle East and Africa, showing that print advertising is declining around the globe. The two media types combined, however, still hold nearly a 30 percent media share, validating that print is still a power player in the media mix for marketers.

“We see trends continuing in media, with less-steep ad spend increases in TV and very slight declines in print, making way for growth in the digital space. Although these changes in traditional media are slight, it’s worth noting how the placement of ad dollars is shifting over time,” said Randall Beard, global head, Advertiser Solutions for Nielsen.