Real-time bidding (RTB) is thriving. The programmatic buying technology will account for 13% of total US digital display spending this year, eMarketer estimates, or $1.95 billion.
One reason for RTB’s fast growth is that more publishers and advertisers are getting into the game. Once used primarily to auction off remnant inventory as profitably as possible, RTB has extended to premium publishers, premium brands and premium ad formats.
Digital advertising technology provider Index Platform reported that during the first half of 2012, increases in RTB usage in North America were seen across major advertiser types, including a 30.2% increase in the number of major national advertisers using RTB and a nearly 50% increase in local businesses using it.
Mobile is another growth area, though for now it takes only a small slice of the total RTB pie. Mobile ad server and exchange MoPub reported that iPad full-screen interstitials were the most expensive RTB mobile format on their platform, followed by medium rectangles and iPad banners.
The company reported that overall, RTB ads served to iOS devices were significantly more expensive than those served to smartphones and tablets running Android. The average eCPM for RTB ads served to all devices running iOS was $0.72 in September, compared to just $0.43 for Android.
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