It’s no secret that the future (and present) is online. Businesses are turning to the Internet to market their brands and consumers are logging online to shop. Because of this, marketers across most industries have completely overhauled their strategies to focus on digital marketing. From social media marketing to influencer marketing, there are a ton of ways digital advertising can be used to grow and strengthen your brand.

There are several trends in particular that contribute to the rising popularity of digital advertising. Knowing and understanding them is key to having your marketing dollars go the distance.

  1. Mobile ad revenue is crushing desktop ad revenue

People are totally obsessed with their phones. Apple can charge $1000 for the new iPhone X because people will gladly pay it. Everything from communicating to shopping to banking to finding love is at the tips of our fingers on our smartphone. We certainly aren’t Tindering or Snapchatting on our desktops. If my phone and desktop were in a fire, I’m saving my phone.

It’s obvious then why desktop ad revenue is relatively flat while mobile ad revenue is exploding. And I mean exploding. Internet ad revenue reached over $72.5 billion in 2016. Mobile ad revenue increased by over 66% while desktop ad revenue was up just 5%.

What do all these numbers mean? They mean you need to focus your marketing spend on strategies that are conducive to mobiles. This means social media, influencer marketing, and mobile-friendly websites.

Here are a few other numbers to keep in mind:

  • Social media ad revenue raked in over $16 billion in 2016, this is 49% more than the year before
  • The largest ad spenders include retail (22%), financial services (12%), auto (12%), telecom (9%) and travel (9%)
  • Consumers between the ages of 18-35 spend about 25% of their time on their phones (I spend like, triple that)
  1. Consumers hate ads

Now that we’ve discussed ads, let’s discuss how much people hate ads. Marketers are already aware of how annoying they are. I can’t tell you the number of near nervous breakdowns I’ve had because of annoying pop ups (just let me watch my pirated, illegal tv show already).

Over 92% of survey respondents said that they’d consider using an ad blocker. That’s basically everyone. The other 8% probably didn’t understand the question. The study also found that over 80% of video ads are muted. That’s a whole lot of marketing dollars down the drain.

When it comes to mobile users, the numbers get worse for advertisers. Research done by PageFair found that more than 400 million mobile users block ads compared to 200 million desktop users.

These ad blockers are making it harder and harder for brands to reach their target market. Luckily, influencer marketing is the perfect loophole. Marketers are now asking people’s favourite social media stars to promote their brands for them. Because these influencers are real, relatable people, consumers trust their recommendations almost blindly.

  1. Instagram is the king of social media advertising

So, we know that marketing on the internet (and specifically social media) is important, but where exactly should the focus be? There’s Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, Twitter, and a ton of other platforms a brand can dish their money on.

While Facebook is the undisputed kind of social media, Instagram is looking like the new king of social media advertising.

Instagram commands one of the highest audience engagement rates on social media. And engagement rates are what advertisers dream about. It’s 58% higher than Facebook and 2000% higher than Twitter.

Instagram has grown to be one of the most popular social networks for photo sharing. As their user base skews to the 18-29 range, it’s the perfect platform for brands who target a younger demo. Moreover, it’s incredibly image and video heavy. For this reason, sellers who can incorporate visual media into their ad campaigns stand to gain the most.

Instagram is also becoming more and more useful for selling. Instagram ads can now be made to link directly to a website or product page. This allows for direct engagement right from someone’s Instafeed.


If digital advertising isn’t heavily part of your marketing mix, you’re missing the boat big time. With ROI’s being much higher than that of traditional marketing tactics, you’re literally paying not to take part.