What’s next for digital advertising?

By : SPHmagazines
June 12, 2018
Tags: , , , , , , , ,
Category: Research |

Digital advertising is in a stage of emergency. Fraught with bot, visibility and measurement issues, brands are losing trust in digital advertising. We are only halfway through in 2018, and already gone through a number of scandals: Logan Paul on Youtube, Cambridge Analytica on Facebook, and more recently, Facebook was found providing user data to device makers unauthorised. These issues shed light on the inherent dangers of digital advertising, and brand owners wouldn’t want to be caught with their pants down, associating themselves with objectionable material.

Case in point: Procter & Gamble, one of the world’s biggest advertisers, issued an ultimatum early last year to its digital partners to clean up their act in order to get its ad dollars. This was closely followed by the mass exodus of advertisers from Google and YouTube, upon the discovery of their ads being placed alongside derogatory content.

At the same time, digital advertising has become more democratic. Consumers can now prevent ads from being served to them on websites. Growing at an alarming rate around the world, adblocking was identified as a top internet trend in Kleiner Perkins’ 2016 Internet Trends Report.

Can digital magazine advertising be the answer to digital advertising woes? We say it has the potential, as it checks all the right boxes.

Answer to poor ad engagement and adblocking on websites

The typical web page is cluttered with multiple ad banners, some of which are so bandwidth-exhaustive they slow down the loading time of the page. Even when the page is fully loaded, readers get interrupted by distracting executions (e.g. flashing banners, page takeovers), leading to frustration. These are the main motivations that led consumers to download adblockers.

On the other hand, just like their print counterpart, ads on digital magazines are welcomed by readers as part of the content experience. Our Advertising ROI study found that magazine readers value and trust ads almost as much as editorial content.

The Advertising ROI Report, 2014, SPH Magazines & GfK Singapore

However unlike their print counterpart, content in digital magazines are not static. While retaining the curated and quality editorial content synonymous with magazine media, being on a digital platform allows it to seamlessly connect readers from the magazine page to the web with a single tap, enabling further content exploration. This elevates the immersive reading experience that magazines are known for.

The various adblock technologies have yet to find ways to block ads on digital magazines – not that there are valid reasons to, given the value and trust that magazine readers have towards ads in the medium.


Opens new advertising inventories which nudge readers along the purchase funnel

Beyond engagement, digital magazines enable brands to nudge captive audiences along the purchase funnel and even drive conversions directly.  Below, we outline some of the ways that our digital magazines can facilitate this process:

Galleries: Allow brands to add more images without being bound by the limits of page space. The more visuals there are, the greater the opportunity to impress and persuade potential consumers.

Videos: The content format of choice today, videos deliver the brand message in an arresting manner. It is especially effective in demonstrating product performance, nudging readers into the evaluation stage of the purchase funnel.

URL enhancements: Enable brands to bring readers from the magazine page to their website with a single tap, to get more information or even to make online purchases. Brands can also create special executions such as quizzes or micro-sites.

Dynamic Interstitials: Interstitials are developed using HTML 5 and can host various interactive media within a single page. Dynamic interstitials are designed to follow reader’s eyeball and ensure repeat exposure to drive top-of-mind recall. Moreover, they can be adapted and redeployed on other channels such as on web and print, fully facilitating a multi-platform reach for marketers.

E-commerce: Brands can incorporate buy buttons into their ads on digital magazines to bring readers to checkout pages, thereby providing them instant gratification.

Check out how our advertisers have benefitted from digital magazine advertising in the clip below and contact us for a customised proposal now!


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