State of the industry
As consumers increasingly turn to mobile and video, publishers are faced with the biggest challenges yet around creating, distributing and monetizing content. We know—we’re a publisher, too.
To understand the changes at play, we talked to more than 300 premium publishers in the U.S., identifying the challenges and opportunities they see and how data and automation are empowering them.
Here’s what you need to know:
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 personalization 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.
Ad blockers, quality creative and quality experiences top the list of challenges publishers face, while better audience metrics, engaging ad units, mobile-first video and faster ad loads present big opportunities.
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Publishers expect digital video to be the #1 revenue driver by next year, fueled by better creative, improved user experiences, better targeting and faster 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.
Analyze, Optimize, Monetize, Repeat
The more things change, the more they don’t stay the same. As consumer behaviors evolve, buyer approaches change, the market shifts and, as a result, media inventory values fluctuate constantly, too. But 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
- Optimize constantly to assess buyer patterns and pricing so you can attract more valuable audiences
Analytics & Optimization
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. Data security and cross-device management are the most common uses, followed by audience usage data to inform content and first- and third-party integration.
All this suggests that publishers realize 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.
With the competition for consumers growing fiercer and ad blockers becoming more prevalent, publishers are increasingly evaluating alternative monetization strategies beyond advertising. More than 75% pursue subscription and ad supported business models. Of those focusing on subscriptions, more than 75% expect to expand their subscription options in the next 12 months.
Most publishers have seen changes to their advertising models
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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 monetization strategies in light of current trends, here are key issues to consider:
- Are you and your partners focused on mobile video monetization?
- 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 maximize inventory yield?
- How are you minimizing the Tech Tax?