a group of young people looking at their phones

People are increasingly doing everything on their mobile, so that’s where ou should target your advertising efforts too. Source: Shutterstock

Why you should invest more in digital advertising

COMPANIES used to capture the attention of potential customers with flashy TV ads. This is now no longer the case.

For the first time, companies are spending more on digital advertising than TV. According to a report by Dentsu Aegis Network, digital will overtake TV to account for 38.4 percent share of total ad spend in 2018. In comparison, TV is only getting 35.5 percent share of the dole, if forecasts are accurate.

This is hardly surprising. People are increasingly using mobile devices as a primary source of content and services. It only makes sense that businesses choose to spend more on digital advertising, as that is where their customers are.

Nick Waters, Chief Executive Officer for Dentsu Aegis Network Asia Pacific, told Tech Wire Asia that mobile will be the new frontier for advertising.

“Mobile phones are becoming the battleground for brands and advertisers,” he said. “Global media partners and advertising are building out in-depth profiles of individuals and then clumping them into sets and groups of audiences that share similarities.”

Data such as search history, online social interaction and transport rituals, provides advertisers with insights on users. Advertisers can perform smarter ad targeting, by delivering the right message at the right time, in the right format and platform to the right person.

“Already, we are seeing shoppable video ads online, which enables a real shift from a world of awareness to trial and real business outcomes,” Waters described.

In China, Waters observed that more and more companies are shifting their budget to e-commerce to help push sales.

Gadgets like smart TV are gaining popularity, which will drive the adoption of online-based TV services. On the flip side, this spells the decline for scheduled broadcast television, making it all the more important for advertisers to target digital, even for TV-based content.

On a related note, there will be more and more mini-programs embedded in mobile apps. Mini programs refer to the additional functionalities downloaded and run within an app. Things like playing games on a chat app, or making fund transfers within a messaging app, are examples of mini programs.

This is already popular in the country’s widely used WeChat app. Users can make payments, play games, order food, hail rides, shop online – all enabled by third-party mini programs.

Waters is expecting mini programs to change the way digital marketing works in the coming three years.

China isn’t the only market where mobile and digital proliferation is so widespread that it has slowly become the norm. In fact, India will be the biggest beneficiary, with a forecasted growth of 31.9 percent in digital.

The numbers for India show the importance of targeting ads in online videos and social media. Messaging apps are quickly becoming the community platform for social engagement; for businesses, this means chat apps will be the next community management platform for brands.

As people spend more time with mobile phones, it becomes vital for businesses to engage with potential customers where they are. If companies fail to invest in digital, they will lose a significant portion of the market.