State of the industry
As consumers increasingly turn to mobile and video, publishers are faced with the biggest challenges yet around creating, distributing and monetising content. We know—we’re a publisher, too.
To understand the changes at play, we talked to more than 300 premium publishers in the UK, identifying the challenges and opportunities they see and how data and automation are empowering them.
Here are some key takeaways:
Meeting the Mobile & Video Demand
Consumers are in control when it comes to what they’ll watch, on which device and when. They demand more flexibility across platforms, expect more personalisation in content and crave more inventive experiences. Publishers are hyper focused on meeting those demands on mobile and video, areas in which they anticipate to see the most growth in the next 12 months.
Faster ad loads, engaging ad units, and more mobile web-based content are cited as the top opportunities of mobile, while ad blockers and quality of experience and creative are seen as the largest challenges.
(creative and formatting)
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Digital video is expected to be the #1 revenue driver for publishers in the next year, primarily fueled by its association with an improved user experience; quality creative, better targeting and better load times.
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Third-party publishing platforms like Facebook Instant Articles, Apple News and Google AMP still fuel the distribution debate among publishers. But what originally sparked panic seems to be paying off for many.
Analyse, Optimise, Monetise, Repeat
The more things change, the more they don’t stay the same. As consumer behaviours evolve, we’re seeing changes in how publishers are buying inventory and, as a result, the value of that inventory. In 2016, publishers have been more aggressive in bringing greater efficiency to their businesses. The key: Data.
Now more than ever, it’s critical to invest in tools that:
- Identify where consumers are coming from and which traffic sources are the most valuable
- Layer intelligence on top of execution technology to improve real-time decision-making and ensure brand safety
- Optimise constantly to assess buyer patterns and pricing so you can attract more valuable audiences
Analytics & Optimisation
Publishers depend on a vast array of third-party services, the most common being data management, analytics and performance reporting. More than 66% cite the ability to access data holistically across platforms as very/extremely important.
While many publishers rely on a DMP, they do so for different reasons. The most commonly cited uses: cross-device matching and data security, followed by audience extension and audience segmentation and targeting.
All this suggests that publishers realise they need to be just as data savvy as their advertisers. It also points to the costly gap between in-house and third-party capabilities.
Tech Tax Tyranny
Publishers are still prey to the tech tax—dollars lost to multiple intermediary vendors across the ad buying process.
Direct sales and SSPs are expected to see the highest volume of inventory sales over the next 12 months, followed by ad networks, exchange-based sales and agency trade desks.
The vast majority of publishers use PMPs
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Header Bidding Is Here To Stay
Header bidding shows no signs of slowing down despite concerns about its longevity and latency.
While today’s media landscape makes it increasingly difficult for publishers to drive revenue, there are solutions. As you advance your content creation, distribution and monetisation strategies in light of current trends, here are key issues to consider:
- Are you and your partners focused on mobile video monetisation?
- How are you driving more holistic efficiency across display, mobile, video and TV?
- How do you access unified intelligence, brand safety and measurement?
- What mechanisms do you have in place to control and maximise inventory yield?
- How are you minimising the Tech Tax?