#Asia Find out which mobile trends will take off in 2016


Mobile video, ad blocking, rise of mobile web, brand-performance strategy and better content are the five trends to watch for in 2016, says Opera MediaWorks’ MD Vikas Gulati

The author Vikas Gulati is the Managing Director of APAC Opera Mediaworks.

It’s that time of year when fresh campaigns are in full swing and financial planning for the year is underway. Now comes the inevitable review of what drove the industry forward this year. And, of course, predictions on how things will be different from last year.

Here are the five things that, in my opinion, marketers need to think about mobile in 2016.

1. All video, all the time

If there’s just one trend to point to in 2015, it’s the non-stop growth in mobile video.

Driven by consumption across operating systems, carriers and countries, mobile is now the first screen of choice, surpassing both TV and desktop in terms of time spent watching.

In fact, consumption and spending on mobile video will get bigger than anyone can even imagine. Native videos are gaining momentum on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and more. In 2016, we’ll see increased adoption of these native video formats among premium publishers and advertisers.

Also Read: Malaysians view mobile videos primarily at home: Survey

2. Mobile apps lead and mobile web will follow

The amount of time people in some countries spend on mobile devices, and specifically on mobile apps, is now greater than the amount of time spent watching TV. The trend of mobile apps getting more traffic than standard browsing on the mobile web will continue to accelerate.

Mobile apps have richer formats and superior experiences than the mobile web. If mobile ad-blocking takes off, publishers will be forced to focus more on making better content and experiences for their mobile apps. I think we’ll see even more creative and deep integrations of in-app content moving forward.

3. Regulations, restrictions and customer reactions

Ad-blocking took centre stage in 2015 and for good reason, because the entire content and advertising ecosystem could potentially be at stake. At the very least, the ultimate consumer pushback against intrusive ads is a wake-up call, one we can expect advertisers, publishers and even industry regulators around the world to heed.

We can also expect some government scrutiny around ad quality, data usage and an increased push for transparency in everything — not only in terms of the quality of media that’s being bought but also data. Companies will need to be far more explicit about how they’re using consumer data now than ever before.

4. New formats, new pastimes and new tools

In the APAC (Asia Pacific) market, smartphones will cross the chasm and begin to significantly outnumber feature phones. Because of this development, connected devices, smarter Artificial Intelligence and seamless mobile payments are all on the horizon.

M-commerce is gradually taking pole position in the mobile-first emerging countries. Mobile payments will also become mainstream.

And we’ll also see an emergence of new players when it comes to audience data. You can expect a wealth of data from telcos, banks, commerce and retail providers to get consolidated on a common platform, to create actionable mobile audiences in 2016.

Also Read: Banks vs independents: Who will win India’s mobile wallet wars?

5. It’s not brand or performance — it is brand and performance

The distinction between ‘brand’ and ‘performance’ advertising strategies is slowly becoming harder to detect and this is especially true when it comes to mobile. In 2016, we’ll see the lines between these two ad disciplines continue to blur even more.

The performance business in mobile is rapidly evolving and the biggest shift will be that developers will have to focus less on just driving installs, and more on finding and targetting quality users. Not only that, we can no longer see brand performance contained just within mobile. We’re seeing it expand off-platform to channels like TV and OOH (out-of-home) to accelerate success. Once it goes mainstream, we can expect mobile branding campaigns to incorporate direct response elements as well.

The views expressed here are of the author’s, and e27 may not necessarily subscribe to them. e27 invites members from Asia’s tech industry and startup community to share their honest opinions and expert knowledge with our readers. If you are interested in sharing your point of view, please send us an email at writers[at]e27[dot]co

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