While the mobile media landscape is still in a trial-and-error period for many publishers, advertisers are jumping in headfirst. According to information technology research and advisory company Gartner, Inc., mobile advertising revenue will reach $11.4 billion in 2013.
For the North American market that number is expected to climb to $3.8 billion this year—an increase of about $700 million from 2012. By 2016, mobile advertising revenue worldwide is expected to more than double to $24.5 billion and $8.8 billion in North America.
“The mobile advertising market took off even faster than we expected due to an increased uptake in smartphones and tablets, as well as the merger of consumer behaviors on computers and mobile devices,” says Stephanie Baghdassarian, research director at Gartner, according to a statement. “Growth in mobile advertising comes in part at the expense of print formats, especially local newspapers, which currently face much lower ad yields as a result of mobile publishing initiatives.”
Mobile search, which Gartner says includes paid positioning on maps and different forms of augmented reality that will all be driven by a consumer’s location, will contribute to drive mobile ad spending across the forecasted period. The company asserts that mobile display ad spending will grow and take over mobile search, with Web display spending to take over in-app displays by 2015.
These circumstances, says Gartner, creates a surplus condition because ad inventory is generated at a pace considerably faster than most advertisers can shift their budgets, which has been driving down unit ad prices—creating circumstances reminiscent of the early days of Web advertising, in which cyclical advertising arrangements among websites produced an inflated picture of revenue.
“Some correction in the growth rate must occur before demand for brand local advertisers catches up with supply, and more sustainable economics support a faster growth rate commensurate with consumer adoption,” says Baghdassarian.
By 2015, the Asia Pacific region will have the largest share of the $24.5 billion in global mobile advertising revenue with $9.4 billion—North America will follow, with Western Europe claiming $4.4 billion.