Mobile Video Explodes to Become the Fastest Growing Online Ad Format


Mobile video advertising grew 196 percent to £63.9 million in the first half of 2014  and is now the fastest growing digital ad format, according to the latest IAB UK Digital Adspend report, which was carried out by PwC. The total spend on video advertising grew by 59 percent year-on-year to £202 million in the first half of 2014. The surge in video spend was one of the key drivers of digital advertising spend, which rose by 16.6 percent to a record £3.5 billion in the first half of 2014.

IAB-PwC - Year-on-year growth rate for selected digital ad formats

Accompanying online YouGov data revealed that 73 percent of Britons online who own an internet-enabled device watched TV programmes online in the last six months, 72 percent watched short online video clips and 59 percent watched films online. Those watching TV online average 2 hours 35 minutes¹ a week doing so, compared to 1 hour 50 minutes for online film viewers and 51 minutes for video clip viewers.

“A third of online viewers, particularly 35-44 year olds, are watching more TV, films and clips online than a year ago. Consequently, video now accounts for £1 in every £5 spent on internet and mobile display ads,” says Tim Elkington, Chief Strategy Officer at the UK’s Internet Advertising Bureau. “Average weekly viewing online amounts to 25 videos, 4-5 TV episodes and one film but what’s most interesting is that watching video on connected devices is becoming an increasingly social activity, like traditional TV. Half of people watching TV, films or video clips online do so with family members and three in ten watch with friends.”

Device owners in Scotland are the most likely to watch TV (78 percent), films (66 percent) and video clips (82 percent) online. However, among online TV and film viewers, those in London average the most time online watching TV (3 hours 6 minutes per week) and films (2 hrs 27 mins) each week. Among video clip viewers, people in the south average the most time (1 hr 2 mins).

Other findings included:

  • Advertising on the internet and mobile phones overall increased, like-for-like, by 16.6 percent or £467 million to £3.46 billion in the first half of 2014 – up from £3.0 billion in the first half of 2013.
  • Content and “native” advertising³ spend – which includes paid for sponsorships, advertisement features and in-feed distribution – hit £216 million, accounting for 21 percent of digital display advertising.
  • Social media ad spend grew 73 percent to £396.0 million, with 53 percent (£209.7 million) allocated to mobile.

Among media owners who submitted revenue figures to the IAB/PwC, tablet-dedicated advertising grew 160 percent to reach £29.0 million; up from £10.5 million.

Commenting on the findings, Nick Reid, UK MD of TubeMogul, said, “Online video advertising has grown 59 percent year-on-year to be worth £202m but what’s interesting is that the growth rate shoots up to 196 percent for mobile video alone. The fact that mobile video ad spend is the fastest growing ad format is simply indicative of ad spend following and reflecting changes in consumer behaviour. However, while advertisers are aware that their audience has shifted from TV to digital and mobile devices it is also important to remember that consumers aren’t aware of this change. People simply just watch video, wherever and whenever they want to rather than statically via a TV set, like they did ten years ago.”


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