UK digital ad spend surpassed £10.3bn in 2016 – an increase of 17% and the fastest growth rate for the industry in nine years, according to the IAB/PwC Digital Adspend Report.
This growth was driven by a massive rise in mobile and outstream video ad formats. Mobile ad spend rose by over 50% to reach £3.9bn in 2016, and now accounts for 38% of all spend in Britain.
During the same period, spend on mobile video ads grew 103% to £693m, 56% of which was spent on outstream formats.
Outstream saw strong growth across the board in 2016, with spend reaching £465m – an increase of 234% year-on-year. Outstream video now accounts for 43% of the UK digital video market, which reached £1.09bn in 2016.
The IAB report also revealed 72% of display advertising was traded programmatically in 2016, up from 63% in 2015. The study forecasts that 80%-90% of digital display will be programmatic by 2019.
Programmatic spend on desktop and mobile video increased 56% (£400m) and 83% (£690m) respectively.
An accompanying YouGov consumer survey also showed that 54% of British smartphone users regularly watch video on their phone. This number rises among 18 to 24-year-olds, with 75% watching short clips, 44% watching TV and 33% watching films on mobiles.
IAB UK’s Chief Marketing Officer, James Chandler said: “The rise in people consuming mobile and video content has accelerated digital’s growth rate to its highest level for nearly a decade.
“Reaching the £10 billion threshold has been made possible by brands breaking the mould, trying innovative formats and making the most of video to reach and amaze people. It’s impossible to ignore the issues the industry is facing at the moment, but digital never stands still and these figures are testament to the long term strength and power of digital.”