Mobile Drives Canada's Programmatic Growth - eMarketer

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Mobile Drives Canada's Programmatic Growth

Programmatic, including social media ads, will account for majority of digital display ad spending in Canada in 2016

October 13, 2015

Programmatic ad spending in Canada lags behind that of the US and UK, in terms of its share of overall digital display ad spending, according to eMarketer’s first comprehensive forecast of programmatic ad spending in Canada. Programmatic digital display ad spending in Canada will reach C$881.8 million ($798.5 million) in 2015, up 62.4% from last year. That represents 48.0% of total digital display.

Programmatic Digital Display Ad Spending in Canada, 2014-2017 (millions of C$, % change and % of total digital display ad spending*)

Programmatic’s current share of the digital ad market puts Canada about 12 months behind the programmatic markets of the US and UK. By 2016, eMarketer expects, programmatic will account for more than half (58%) of total digital display ad spending in Canada.

eMarketer defines programmatic digital display ad spending as including API-driven spending on social media platforms, as well as other digital display ads purchased via real-time bidding or programmatic direct methods.

“Programmatic advertising in Canada trails other comparable markets in terms of its share of total digital ad spending due primarily to the structure of the market—relatively few publishers offering advertisers options for programmatic inventory,” said eMarketer analyst Paul Briggs. “What remains an obstacle to programmatic globally, and applies to Canada as well, are persisting concerns for advertisers regarding transparency in ad delivery and ad fraud.”

Mobile Programmatic Display Ad Spending in Canada, 2014-2017 (millions of C$, % change and % of total mobile display ad spending)

Canada’s mobile programmatic ad spending will grow 104.4%, according to eMarketer, in 2015, following a meteoric rise of 484% in 2014. More than half (54.0%) of mobile display ad spending in Canada is run through programmatic channels. That number is expected to surge to 73.0% in 2017, crossing the C$1 billion mark for the first time.

As mobile programmatic grows in Canada, desktop’s share continues to shrink. In 2015, desktop- and laptop-based programmatic will account for 57.2% (C$504.0 million, or $456.4 million) of total programmatic display spending, down from 65.9% (C$358.0 million, or $324.2 million) in 2014. By 2017, desktop’s share of programmatic will drop to 32.1%, or C$486.9 million ($440.9 million).

“Desktop programmatic display will continue to play an important role in marketing campaigns,” said Briggs. “A more symbiotic approach to cross-device campaigns is now emerging in Canada. Mobile will help engage the consumer initially, while desktop will play a key role toward converting engagement into purchase.”

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