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Is there a future for publishers and display ads?

December 9, 2015 | Lucy Tozer

Is there a future for publishers and display ads?

A recent report from Econsultancy has identified a new challenge faced by publishers and their advertising strategy… is there a future for display ads?

Using data from a survey of 127 senior marketers from US companies worth at least $50m and with direct knowledge of ad opportunities, the report highlighted that 40% of the respondents noted stagnant or declining display ad revenue. 60% however, reported increased ad revenue.[1]

The report found that ad blockers and the unique challenges created by mobile were factors that contributed to the waning revenue. Consumers desire a better experience, especially on mobile devices. This requires a move away from the overwhelming presence of mobile ads and has given rise to the use of ad blockers. The mobile challenges also include the difficulty to recognise the audience across devices. Individual identification is necessary to optimize the user experience and analyse engagement. The study also showed that dynamic content on mobiles also presents a challenge.

So, how can publishers add value to their display ads? The results of the study revealed that the use of data and varied targeting both play an integral role in increasing ad revenue. Of those publishers interviewed, 76% suggested that the identification of individuals across devices/platforms will add a CPM premium. 69% said that targeting registered subscribers and using first party data would also considerably improve revenue – something which is often under-utilised. The combination of harnessing advertiser data, varied targeting and sharing data between publishers is the recipe for success in driving ad revenue.