On May 30th, the venture capitalist Mary Meeker released her latest “Internet Trends” report. The presentation is packed with fantastic stats and charts that are destined to find their way into marketing decks over the next quarter.
The presentation does an amazing job of outlining the state of the internet, as well as highlighting the changes that mobile devices and increased connectivity are having on consumer behavior. With a key focus on mobile, the report outlines the massive opportunity that these devices present for advertisers. The report also makes the case that it will simply take time for advertising dollars to follow the massive number of eyeballs that are increasingly moving “mobile.”
However, in recent weeks there have been arguments made that media companies need to do more than simply wait for mobile ad spend to come based on having a large mobile audience. These arguments focus on the idea that companies need to offer advertisers opportunities that are core to what the mobile device is best at: the ability to combine location, context, and relevance.
You have to appreciate these arguments, especially in light of what is currently happening with Facebook. With a mobile audience of nearly 500 million users and a recent 1B mobile acquisition, many are questioning how Facebook plans to monetize mobile. Recently, Facebook has done more to offer advertisers new mobile ad offerings and it will be exciting to watch them continue to evolve their mobile strategy.
Having a sound mobile strategy will be key to Facebook’s success. That being said, it’s still early in the game. Far too many are still failing to adopt mobile and develop an effective strategy. Too often mobile is still found on page 6 of the advertiser RFP instead of page 1. Publishers consistently fail to realize the true value of their mobile inventory and how to correctly monetize it.
However, these things will change. The mobile space is moving far too quickly for it not to. As Mary Meeker noted in her latest report, mobile represents a $20B+ opportunity in the US alone! Whether advertiser or publisher, it’s impossible to deny the increasing importance of having mobile strategy in place. However, the future success of advertisers and publishers will depend on how quickly they adapt.