Mobile and Social Advertising Expected to Continue Strong Growth in 2017

December 22, 2016

Media, marketing and advertising executives continue to be bullish on the prospects for both mobile and social advertising, according to AdMedia Partners’ 23rd Annual Market Survey [pdf]. More than three-quarters of the respondents to the survey, which polled close to 6,000 executives, expect social advertising buying and spending to increase by more than 10%.

Likewise, more than 7 in 10 see growth rates of more than 10% for social advertising, which has risen to become one of the most influential forms of advertising for young Americans.

Growth rates are also expected to be healthy for custom content/native advertising, video and programmatic. In each case – including mobile and social – roughly 30% or more of executives see growth rates exceeding 20% in the coming year.

More traditional formats, such as search ads and online display, by comparison, will see slower growth, which is to be expected. These formats already account for the bulk of US online ad spending, though mobile, social and video are all growing quickly.

As for mobile, almost one-quarter (23%) say that their businesses are more than 40% mobile, while about twice as many (45%) feel that this will be the case in the next 2 years. (See more of mobile’s rise in MarketingCharts’ Mobile Milestones 2016 Brief.)

It is worth noting that growth rate expectations for digital advertising are a bit damper than in last year’s survey, and the M&A environment seems a little less buoyant. This year 71% would advise prospective buyers to act now, down from 79% last year.

In terms of expansion interesting, analytics is the clear favorite, with 65% of respondents saying that this is an area of interest for expansion or acquisition. This makes sense given rapidly rising spending on analytics, which has become the most difficult skill to hire for in marketing.

There’s also a fair amount of expansion or acquisition interest present for social marketing, design/user experience, mobile marketing and custom content/native advertising, whereas ad tech and market research hold less appeal.

About the Data: The results are based on a Q4 2016 survey of more than 5,700 domestic and international executives in advertising, marketing services, digital marketing, marketing technology, media technology, media or digital media. The vast majority (78%) of respondents come from companies with $50 million or less in annual revenue.

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