Mobile really is social – at least when it comes to ads that is ;) – research firm IDC reports.

Cannot say I am surprised to learn that mobile publishers like Facebook, Twitter, Pandora and The Weather Channel are rapidly gaining control of the U.S. mobile display advertising market, ending years of dominance by ad networks like Google, Millennial Media and Apple research firm IDC reports.

Marketers across the U.S. spent $4.5 billion on mobile advertising in 2012, surging from $2.4 billion in 2011. Mobile display ad spending jumped 8 percentage points and now accounts for 39 percent of all spending, accounting for revenues of $1.7 billion, up from $700 million in 2011.

Publishers captured 52 percent of mobile display ad spending in 2012, up from 39 percent the previous year. Among mobile publishers selling display advertising, Facebook raked in the largest gross revenue at $234 million, followed by Pandora ($229 million) and Twitter ($117 million). Looking at the ad network segment, Google remains on top with gross revenues of $243 million, trailed by Millennial Media at $151 million, Apple at $125 million and Jumptap at $90 million.

“Mobile ad networks are losing market share to publishers, and we expect them to lose even more going forward,” said IDC Vice President of Media & Entertainment Karsten Weide. “Networks, especially independent ones, are entering a difficult phase, in which, with an ever smaller share of revenue, they’ll have to compete with publishers, which will only grow in strength.”

Mobile search ads represent 61 percent of U.S. mobile ad spending, accounting for revenues of $2.8 billion, increasing from $1.6 billion a year earlier. Google led the mobile search ad segment with a gross market share of 79 percent and gross revenues of $2.1 billion. Not surprising really.

It would be interesting to find out however how much more accidentally clicking or tapping there might be on social and app sites rather than through search…. but that’s another point entirely.

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