Worldwide spending on mobile advertising skyrocketed last year and is poised to soar again in 2014, according to a new study released by firm eMarketer. Study data showed that in 2013 nearly $18 billion was spent on mobile advertising – a 105% annual increase. This year, that global outlay will jump dramatically, eMarketer predicts. “In 2014, mobile is on pace to rise another 75.1% to $31.45 billion, accounting for nearly one-quarter of total digital ad spending worldwide,” eMarketer said.
As spending on mobile advertising shoots up, the big winners appear to be Google and Facebook, according to eMarketer. Net mobile ad revenues from the two companies reportedly increased $6.92 billion last year – 75% of the additional $9.2 billion that advertisers spent on mobile as a whole in 2013 over 2012. “The rapid pace at which mobile has taken over the company’s ad revenue share indicates Facebook’s mobile future,” eMarketer said. “In 2012, only 11% of Facebook’s net ad revenues worldwide came from mobile, and last year, that figure jumped to 45.1%.”
Big gains in mobile advertising are being noticed by ad specialty industry firms. As companies look to leverage mobile, they’re investing in more than just advertisements, though. New York-based Motivators (asi/277780), for example, offers a mobile application for iOS and Android and is in the midst of redesigning its mobile site. “We want people shopping on their phones to be able to efficiently find what they need,” said Bill O’Shea, eCommerce manager at Motivators. “We recently expanded our budget to include mobile. We look at mobile advertising as another channel that’s worth exploring.”
With money pouring into mobile, should distributors worry that fewer marketing dollars will be available for promotional products? Mark Graham, CEO of Rightsleeve (asi/308922), doesn’t think so. “I view promotional products as complementary, if not separate, from mobile,” he told Counselor. “In general, digital investments have not cut much into, if at all, promotional products budgets. Buyers see these budgets as separate.”
Plus, promotional products can potentially be used to help keep the cost of mobile advertising down – while still helping clients engage their target audiences on mobile platforms. “By including a call-to-action to the mobile site in the imprint,” said O’Shea, “customers can bypass the search engines and go directly to the site.”