The coming together of advertising and technology


What can we learn from Dmexco 2015?

Last week nearly 40,000 marketers trekked across Europe to attend Dmexco, the world’s largest advertising and technology conference. The attendees were met by hundreds of speakers and thousands of exhibitors. Some were brilliant, some banal. Here are the four most interesting findings:

  1. The disruption of search

The rapid rise of mobile internet usage has repercussions for how consumers discover brands. Search’s importance is declining, hit by the growth of apps as a means of navigation, smaller screens which make typing tricky and the importance of recommendations on social networks.

How consumers search is also changing, with voice search becoming increasingly popular. According to our figures, 27% of consumers used voice search in the last month. This will have two important effects. Firstly, Google’s dominance is threatened. It will be hard to maintain 90% market share when Apple, Amazon and Microsoft have equally strong products which are often integrated into the phone. Secondly, the terms used when searching will change. People are more likely to speak full sentences when searching via speech than when typing.

Brands need to ensure their search strategies are ready for these changes.

  1. The rise of the ad blocker

The growing usage of ad blockers is a concern for advertisers. In the UK, 28% of adults say they have used one in the last month. However, what was once a desktop issue is now affecting mobile too as iOS9 comes with built-in ad blocking options.

We expect the uptake of mobile ad blockers to outpace that of desktop as they reduce data usage, speed up page load times as well as addressing privacy concerns. So how will this affect mobile advertising? Since most ad blockers work on mobile browsers, we think it will hasten the demise of the web banner. Advertising money will migrate to areas immune to ad blocking, such as in-app and native content. This is no bad thing, as this advertising is, by definition, integrated with the user interface and tends to generate better results.

We predict native will represent 25% of display advertising by 2017 meaning advertisers must ensure native content is at the heart of their creative process, not an add-on at the end.

  1. Instagram opens fully for advertisers

One of the most interesting media owner presentations was from Instagram, which has opened its platform fully to advertisers. This is of interest for three reasons. Firstly, the scale. Instagram has 14 million users in the UK, on par with Twitter. Secondly, the precision of targeting. User-data captured on Facebook is available to target ads on Instagram. And finally, there’s the low levels of clutter.

This is an opportunity, as our in-house research has shown, that low levels of clutter boost ad effectiveness.

  1. All DMPs are equal but some are more equal than others

One of the key questions was how can DMPs (Data Management Platforms) be made as useful as possible?

The unequivocal answer was when you can insert your owned or acquired data and match it to actionable channels with defined KPIs and change advertising behaviours across your entire technology stack. It cannot work with only one technology stack. It needs to work with multiple ad servers, DSPs, third party data providers, and allow first party data injections.

DMPs that are tied into a particular media buy or can only activate across one channel are not sustainable propositions. Advertisers and agencies should work together on the vetting process for this technology and be ready to hire the right people internally to use this new data efficiently.

Picture: (Facebook/Dmexco)

About Author

Richard Shotton

Richard Shotton, head of insight at ZenithOptimedia

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