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How Will 2013’s Digital Display Trends Converge in 2014?

Programmatic buying, native advertising and viewability combine to create a richer experience

Coming off the heels of 2013, programmatic buying, native advertising and viewability all remain topical to digital display advertisers, particularly brands. Just last year, these distinct trends might have seemed like isolated enhancements. When viewed in totality, however, they reflect an advertising landscape that is evolving to provide brands a richer storytelling experience among a more engaged audience—wherever that audience might be.

A new eMarketer report, “The State of Digital Display 2014: An Industry Readying Itself for Brand Advertisers,” explores how four main digital display advertising trends will both manifest and intersect in 2014:

  • The focus will continue to shift from standard display ad units to more dynamic, engaging ad units. Banners won’t cut it anymore, and brands will look to native advertising and richer content ads, such as the IAB Rising Stars, to draw in consumers.
  • Programmatic direct will emerge as a primary vehicle to pair those richer ad units with consumer data. Brands will get smarter about using programmatic direct not just to automate the procurement of premium ads, but to bring that inventory to life among a more captive audience.
  • Marketers will look beyond behavioral web data to better understand their customers and reach those customers across devices. Location-based and TV data have existed before, but this year, marketers will make a concerted effort to leverage this information for greater insight into consumer behaviors and apply that data to improve ad experiences across devices.
  • The viewable impression standard will finally become just that—a standard. With the Media Rating Council expected to lift the advisory on viewable impressions in March, many expect the viewable CPM—a metric finally more in line with broadcast measures—to emerge as a new display pricing model.

eMarketer estimates that this year, US spending on digital display ads will grow faster than any other format as companies in the digital display advertising ecosystem seek to further prove display a compelling storytelling medium for brands. Investments will hit $21.18 billion to claim 44.0% of all digital advertising—the second-largest share. Display will surpass search in 2015 to claim the largest portion of the digital ad spending pie.


The full report, “The State of Digital Display 2014: An Industry Readying Itself for Brand Advertisers,” also answers these key questions:

  • How will native advertising and the IAB Rising Stars influence display advertisers in 2014?
  • How will brands use programmatic direct to integrate richer advertising experiences with customer data?
  • What types of customer data will brands focus on in 2014, and what privacy implications might this have?
  • How will the viewable impression affect digital display in the coming year?

This report is available to eMarketer corporate subscription clients only. eMarketer clients, log in and view the report now.

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