Mobile advertising spend has grown a massive 157% year on year increase to £203m in UK, up from £83m in 2010 to £203m in 2011. The study, from Internet Advertising Bureau and Pricewaterhouse Coopers, has revealed that the rise of mobile devices is increasingly creating a nation of so-called “triple screeners” – people who social network, surf the web and watch live TV simultaneously.
Some 53% of the UK population now own a smartphone device, prompting advertisers to increasingly turn to the medium as a display advertising platform.
Retail now among biggest spenders on mobile ads
The top five display categories, by share of spend, in 2011 were:
Entertainment & the Media 23.2% (32.9% in 2010)
Telecoms 14.9% (14.3% in 2010)
Consumer Goods/FMCG 14.4% (11.8% in 2010)
Retail 12.3% (5.5% in 2010)
Finance 10.3% (18.6% in 2010)
For the first time, retail is among the top-spending mobile sectors, accounting for a 12.3% share of total spend, compared with 5.5% the previous year.
According to the IAB, this leap is driven by the rapid growth in m-commerce.
It claims 24% of consumers have bought a product or service via their device, while 38% of respondents to its Mobile Online Journey study on January have used their phones in store, while 55% of them have conducted an internet search in-store.
FMCG brands have also increased their share of total mobile adspend in 2011 to 14.4%, from 11.8% in 2010, making it the third-biggest spending sector after entertainment and media (23.2%) and telecoms (14.9%).
Both sectors overtook finance and automotive, which had previously been major spenders in mobile marketing, for the first time.
Finance brands dropped their investment in mobile advertising by 81% in 2011, accounting for 10.3% of the total spend. The previous year, finance brands boosted their mobile ad spend, making it the second-largest sector, with an 18.6% share for 2010.
Technology brands significantly boosted their investment, to account for 8.4% of total share in 2011, up 180% from the previous year.
Jon Mew, director of mobile and operations at the IAB, said: “This study proves just how engrained mobile has become within both brands’ and consumers’ day to day lives. With 26 million smartphone owners now in the UK – the opportunities for brands to interact with consumers in a more innovative and relevant way are endless. So it’s no surprise to see mobile advertising continuing to grow at such an overwhelming and encouraging rate.’’
This year the IAB also measured tablet specific advertising for the first time, finding that it accounted for £2.4m of spending in 2011.