Programmatic bidding and huge growth among hyper game developers made 2018 a banner year for mobile. The question is: will 2019 be as significant?
In our view, 2019 will also be pivotal. Programmatic is taking hold in the form of unified auctions, a revolution that could finally do away with waterfall mediation. Brands, which prefer programmatic spending, are flooding into mobile as a result. These two trends are remaking an industry long reliant on in-app purchases.
But those are only the most visible trends. For more specific predictions, three of Chartboost’s top prognosticators weighed in on what we’ll see in 2019.
Demand-Side Predictions — Julius Ramirez, SVP of Global Revenue & Partnerships
In 2019, we’ll see increased accountability and transparency across the programmatic in-app ecosystem. This will have follow-on effects on each player in the system: demand-side platforms (DSPs), supply-side platforms (SSPs), ad networks, and publishers. Each of these participants will be forced to work together , toward a standard that fights fraud while supporting the auction models.
More specific to in-app programmatic platforms, the ecosystem is cleaning up access to inventory via a process called Supply Path Optimization (SPO). In SPO, suppliers and buyers look for ways to optimize the supply chain — which often means removing third-party resellers, who are no longer necessary in a world where supply and demand can work directly with each other.
New segmentation and packaging of available inventory will also attract more programmatic demand, as in-app marketers experience more competition across quality inventory.
Supply-Side Predictions — Fiona Lin Ferrier, VP of Business for America & Asia
I can confidently say that 2019 will be the breakthrough year for unified auctions. In anticipation, we wrote a primer on unified auctions. We believe that this new auction system will replace traditional waterfall mediation. In the process, it will make mobile in-app advertising more fair and efficient, and boost revenue for publishers.
With this increase in ad revenue, more developers will turn to ad-based monetization. Developers who don’t follow pure ad-based monetization will nevertheless take ads more seriously, factoring both in-app purchases and ad monetization into their LTV calculations.
Hyper casual game developers, of course, already follow a pure ad-based model. For these, business will be better than ever — but also more competitive, as the genre matures and acquisition costs rise.
Overall Industry — Pepe Agell, Chief Strategy Officer
We’ll see SDK solutions consolidate to create alternatives to Facebook, Google, and Amazon. Expect acquisitions and investments from the biggest demand-side platforms.
In-app advertising isn’t ready to plateau. We’ll see growth continue in 2019 and beyond. Much of the growth will come from brands, who have been waiting for programmatic solutions.
Finally, 2019 will be the year that unified auctions grow fastest in mobile. Before long, there will be a short list of dominant solutions in this new programmatic landscape.
Other predictions around the web:
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From all of us here at Chartboost, have a Happy New Year. We’re looking forward to your business in 2019!
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