High CPMs, Effective and Rapidly Growing Supply: What’s Not to Like About Native Mobile Video?

Yoni ArgamanIn an industry that has grown weary of buzzwords, you’d be forgiven for raising an eyebrow at the mention of ‘native mobile video advertising’. However, the reality is that native, mobile and video are surging and converging, and many believe that native mobile video is the next big frontier. Inneractive, Yoni Argaman, VP of Marketing and Business Strategy for Inneractive, a mobile ad exchange that focuses heavily on native and mobile video advertising.

Where are we seeing the growth in mobile video on the publishing side?

We are seeing overall growth in mobile supply, both on the mobile web and with in-app supply. The growth happens across all ad units, mainly interstitial and video units. Following the recently issued Open RTB2.3 protocol, we are seeing a slow growth in mobile native supply, especially in-feed formats. In terms of geo, while US mobile supply is still growing nicely, mobile supply in APAC is growing rapidly, mostly driven by the growth in devices and a host of popular new non-gaming applications.

There’s a lot of buzz around native mobile video at the moment. Why should we be getting excited about it?

The native in-feed format is more natural to mobile than it is to desktop due to the fact that in-feed environments work very well with the smaller size of a mobile screen. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are good examples of such mobile environments.

Native video should work well for all parties. It generates higher CPMs for publishers (without the need to produce or partner for video content), greater reach and more opportunities to better engage with users for marketers and a better user experience for users.

Are you seeing mobile video being used in performance campaigns?

Yes, we are seeing seeing performance advertisers spending on mobile video, especially from certain verticals such as large gaming companies who are looking to generate installs. It works well in mobile due to the ease and immediate nature of the desired action, an install, on mobile devices. In terms of ROIs, it is important to understand that many of these ads are interstitial and now native video ads, formats that are usually cheaper than pre-rolls. As opposed to mobile, the vast majority of video ads running on desktop are still brand campaigns.

Do publishers still have concerns about selling their mobile video inventory programmatically, or have we moved past that stage now? 

Yes they do. The two main concerns that publishers have with programmatic channels are price and control. For many publishers, programmatic channels are associated with a ‘race to the bottom’ in terms of the CPM rates that they are getting for their supply. Those channels are also associated with lack of transparency and control over the ads that are served on the publishers’ properties. This is especially true for premium publishers who are highly sensitive about their environments and usually maintain an active sales force who works directly with the brands and agencies.

Offering publishers private pipes that are ‘premium programmatic’ mobile environments such as private marketplaces and programmatic guaranteed is a critical solution. This way publishers can cherry pick the buyers that they want to work with, set advanced floor pricing schemes, run premium ad units such as native and video at scale via RTB and even bring in their offline deals into a true unified auction mechanism. Transparency and advanced measurement metrics such as viewability and addressability are also key in the makeup of a bulletproof solution.

Based on our experience, these solutions are making publishers more comfortable in directing their premium inventory into programmatic channels. There is still a long way to go but we are recognising a trend and believe that it will only grow with the development of such private pipes.

Are trading desks typically buying mobile video using mobile video DSPs or are many still asking for vendors to execute campaigns on their behalf?

From what we are seeing, I feel that trading desks are using DSPs to execute their campaigns. They either have an in-house solution, are using a white label one or using a large external DSP like Turn, Mediamath, etc.

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