In the UK, online and mobile advertising revenue is said to have reached a new high of nearly £5bn last year, spurred by a considerable increase in video and social media advertising. A report from the UK-based Internet Advertising Bureau, conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers, goes on to say that the rise represents the biggest increase in internet advertising in five years. Further, the increased popularity of iPhones and iPads also helped to drive a 157 per cent increase in advertising on mobile devices. A recent report by Marin Software stated that this increase is at least partly driven by UK mobile devices having much higher click through rates than desktop PCs, and therefore a higher chance of successfully catching a user’s eye.
Part of this could be attributed to the glossier, print-like presentation of applications based on the Lean Back tablet form, which closely mirrors the experience of reading a magazine. As such, advertisers have the space to re-create print adverts on screen, and therefore create more refined marketing collateral than the clunky and crude form of paid-for advertising one might usually find on internet websites.
By now, it is clear that users of traditional print media are not shedding their preferences or tastes for other print alternatives. They are migrating online, captured by the richer, more comprehensive and convenient experience of the digital platform. In particular, with sales of iPads and iPhones eclipsing that of desktop PCs, users are shifting to tablets and mobile phones for on-the-move consumption.
As a result, there is a great opportunity for advertisers to gain from the rising interest in tablet PC media applications. Unlike reading articles on a desktop PC, where a user’s attention is typically limited to 700 words, the close replication of a magazine or newspaper’s print form on a tablet application often spurs a greater interest in more long-form journalism, and thus the level of attentiveness that advertisers need to capture imaginations. These results show that if news outlets can only find a way of channelling funds and resources into their Lean Back platforms, advertisers should be on hand to help prop them up once again.