The 614 Group’s Mobile Monetization Report Reveals Wide Gap Between Online Publishers’ Resources and Skills and Growth Potential

Today, digital marketing and advertising research firm The 614 Group released, “The Exchanges and SSPs,” the third chapter of its three-part market research entitled, “A Journey Into Mobile Monetization.” 614’s study surveyed leading mobile ad-tech providers including AerServ, Appnexus, PubMatic, OpenX and Rubicon Project in order to help publishers understand how to best monetize their mobile content and maintain the brand experience in which they’ve invested.

As first reported by The Drum, the report revealed a surprising gap for online publishers between the resources and skills needed to realize the predicted growth trajectory of the mobile adtech industry. For example, although 50% of participating publishers’ daily traffic comes from wireless devices, the report found that only 25% of in-house teams at publishers possess the HTML5 coding skills necessary to monetize their mobile inventory.

These striking examples and ample other data points featured throughout 614’s report clearly cry out for increased investment toward building a scalable mobile monetization infrastructure. These efforts range from ramping in house teams’ mobile education and skills to partnering with best-in-class players across the ecosystem to significantly amplify publishers’ value to consumers.

Additionally, as mobile video ad spend continues to accelerate–IAB reported an 85% increase from 2 years ago alone–614 discussed how mobile video will become an increasingly vital part of mobile marketers broader monetization plan. Planned properly, it can serve as another healthy, scalable revenue driver. Featured in the report, our COO Andrew Gerhart commented:

  They can’t just slap a bunch of videos in the app, or intrusive interstitials without degrading the user’s experience. Monetization must be a consideration as they design and build the app, and many have done a terrific job engaging people and monetizing their inventory as users move through their apps.

Some apps are easier than others to monetize. Thanks to radio and TV, it’s easy to insert advertising because commercial breaks are the accepted norm. But it’s more difficult for a game or utility app. Rewarded videos are a fairly non-intrusive way for developers to integrate high-paying video ads while keeping their users happy. In fact, our customers have told us that they get complaints from users when they run out of ads (and consequently rewards). This is proof that rewarded videos are win-win for users and developers.


Finally, when considering ad-tech partners, 614 cautions that publishers must diligently map their values and business needs (e.g., viewability, transparency, brand safety, etc.) to ensure long-term competitive advantage. In its analysis summary, 614 advised, “As you interview your ad-tech partners…you’ll want to assess their relationship to the media they sell. Many publishers are uncomfortable partnering with tech providers that also own media, preferring not to rely on a tech partner that is simultaneously a competitor.”

To help publishers further discern the best potential partners to work with, 614 provided specific questions that publishers should ask around mobile demand curation, including: How does the vendor select the demand sources that participate in its markets? Is there a dedicated team to curate the advertisers and automated buyers? What is their screening and quali cation process? Is the vendor willing to share details on the buyers that participate in its markets? And finally, which types of campaigns — performance or branding — do buyers execute within the vendor’s market?