Ad networks, ad exchanges, real-time bidding platforms, and many other self-styled mobile ad "solutions," seem to offer everything to everyone, including the best data, the best and most varied targeting technologies, and access to the most premium sites and apps.
In a recent report from BI Intelligence, we cut through the noise, identify the most meaningful shifts in the mobile ad landscape, and demystify the actual role played by the different entities and technologies, explaining each player's strengths and weakness. We also look at how the rise of programmatic buying will affect buyers and sellers across the mobile landscape.
Here are some of the key developments in the mobile ad ecosystem:
- The industry is simultaneously consolidating, and growing more complex. Ad exchanges, supply-side platforms and mobile ad networks are all reaching for scale and the latest ad technology. Increasingly, the lines between these entities are blurring.
- These companies are all vying for advertiser dollars and making big promises about the data and inventory they can provide buyers. But the fractured landscape makes it difficult to determine which companies have the best set of offerings to meet mobile advertisers' goals.
- Programmatic is growing at a fast clip in developed mobile markets like the United States, 56% annually by some estimates. Within mobile programmatic, real-time bidding, which allows for the serving of personalized ads to app and site visitors, is particularly influential. We explain why RTB is crucial in mobile.
- The rise of programmatic is leading to a reshuffle of the entire industry. Many of this year's mergers and acquisitions in mobile ads can be traced to either the need for scale or the rise of data-focused programmatic ad trading.
- Demand-side platforms and agency trading desks face a major barrier to their rise as engines for the demand side of the programmatic equation: media agencies and media planners remain locked into their comfortable one-on-one relationships with traditional ad networks.
- Sizes the mobile ad market and provides charts and data showing how that spend is breaking down in terms of format and company revenues.
- Clearly defines the different players in the mobile ad ecosystem, both old and new, and how they work together - and apart.
- Examines the benefits and weakness of each of the different players within that ecosystem.
- Explains how programmatic is becoming one of the most important developments changing the game for ad buyers and sellers.
- Considers programmatic's limitations for the time being, and its projected impact in the future.
- Articulates the biggest consolidations and mergers within the mobile ad ecosystem and what these changes mean for mobile advertising.