Digital advertising: Where we stand and what to expect in 2019

IAB UK Mobile Steering Group2018 has been a huge year for digital advertising, with H1 2018 showing that the total UK digital advertising market is now worth £6.4bn, up 15 per cent year-on-year. Mobile advertising has been a massive contributor to this, as we increasingly see a shift towards a mobile-first world.

We chatted to the IAB’s Mobile Steering Group, in particular, Factual, Telegraph Media Group, Ogury, Waze, Celtra and News UK, to gather their thoughts on this key question:

“In terms of the digital advertising industry, what did 2018 mean for you and what do you expect 2019 has in store for our industry?”

Brian Czarny, CMO at Factual
“Access to the right data creates new advertising opportunities to bring consumers back to brick-and-mortar, which we’ll see more of in 2019. Recent resurgences, like REIs #OptOutside campaign, combined out-of-home and mobile ads with location data, driving 3.5 times more store visits; Renault saw a 15 per cent increase in dealership visits with location-powered mobile ads. I also expect location data to be leveraged more for brick-and-mortar pop-ups — an experience that can’t be replicated online.”

Paul de la Nougerede, senior director commercial products at Telegraph Media Group
“2018 was the year when the issues of trust, transparency, and privacy really hit the spotlight. Whilst tackling government legislation around GDPR the industry also came together to launch the IAB Gold Standard and publishers collaborated in ways never seen before with the creation of The Ozone Project. Both of these initiatives point to a rosier future for all involved.”

Adam Rubach, managing director UK at Ogury
“As the marker for the beginning of the GDPR era, 2018 was the year that marketers had to face the reality of acting with transparency over how consumer data is collected and used. The Wild West days of data collection are over. Customers today expect clarity over their data usage, and going into next year, only the most responsible providers will be in a position to secure their trust and reap the associated business results.”

Finlay Clark, UK country manager at Waze
“Transparency across the industry has been a continued theme of 2018; customers want to know how their data is being used, clients need to know where their ads are showing, and post-GDPR there is a shift to premium publishers who own the relationship with the customer.  The context the ad appears in has greater value in this world, which is a good thing, as theres more to advertising than perfect targeting.  

“In 2019 we’re hoping that we see more creativity, especially on mobile, and this comes from creative, media and technology people working closer together to bring advertising experiences that add to, and doesn’t detract from the experience itself.”

Lolly Mason, VP media partnerships EMEA at Celtra Inc
“In future, I believe we’ll look back and see this as a significant time in our industry’s evolution. For too long, immediate ROI trumped quality and the industry is now mid-seismic shift with every aspect of quality taking centre stage: creativity, relevance, UX, transparency, integrity. This will develop further in 2019 with a focus on driving quality at scale – more advertising must become better, for instance through creative automation and ‘baked in’ quality in programmatic platforms.”

Milton Elias, head of mobile & video at News UK
“2018 has been a year of growth for the UK digital advertising industry, with video being the largest driver (40 per cent year-on-year investment increase according to IAB/PwC). As mobile screens continue to claim the lion’s share of digital media consumption and content is watched across more devices and platforms, digital video ad investment will surely increase in the year ahead. Consistent measurement solutions and trusted quality content creators/environments will be essential in building sustained advertiser confidence.”