For over a decade, the classic example used in mobile marketing was the mobile ad a user walking down the street would receive from a nearby Starbucks, advertising an off-hours special to increase foot traffic during slow hours.
Though location-targeting via mobile devices isn’t yet in use at the street level universally, location-based targeting was clearly the biggest trend in mobile video advertising in 2016, as we took a big step forward to making the aforementioned example a mobile marketing reality. And I believe that this location-based trend will only gain traction in 2017.
Another trend from 2016 which will gain traction in 2017 is enhanced use of seasonality in mobile video advertising. We’ve seen seasonal trends in travel advertising whereby travel marketers increase advertising in Q2 (Spring) and Q4 (Fall) leading up to traditional Summer and Winter vacations, and Home Improvement (in our Retail category) advertising increases in Q2 (Spring) as homeowners fix their house leading up to the summer. I also believe late Q3/early Q4 is an opportunity for home improvement advertisers to run campaigns about winter-proofing homes.
An additional trend which I expect to grow in 2017 is the use of ads created and optimized to run vertically, such as on Snapchat. With their upcoming IPO, Snapchat is the biggest platform to influence mobile video advertising since Facebook, so it’s not surprising that its vertical format is gaining acceptance and usage in the industry.
Advancements in media planning and buying technologies will increase the percentage of mobile video ads which are purchased via programmatic technologies in 2017. Other technology advancements in the coming years will enable better location-driven targeting at the DMA (city) and even neighborhood level along with time-based targeting, making the example I presented in the opening paragraph a reality for more and more marketers around the world.
By reviewing the leading ad category performance in 2016, and taking into account the coming industry trends, I am confident mobile marketers and agency media planners and buyers can improve their performance in 2017.