Africa’s digital and mobile media advertising expected to boom
The proliferation of new generation of affordable smartphones across Africa has continued to change how Africans access the Internet and conduct business. Africa boasts the world’s second largest number of mobile phone users and the numbers can only go up. According to research, the majority of Africans who go online using their phones do so to access their social networking site accounts, while more than a quarter do so to access their local news sites daily. Gone are the days when majority of Africans relied on either Internet cafes or old generation smartphones to access the Internet. The last 12 months month has seen an increase of a new generation of smartphones in Africa that are user-friendly and relatively affordable price for many in the continent. Smartphones will have specific features for Internet access and social media, so it will be easier to access the sites. It will drive a flood of more frequent Internet access and advertisers in the continent will soon shift a significant amount of their spending to digital and mobile media, threatening print and even TV media, a recent research in more than 30 countries in Africa predicts.
The research expected to be released early next month shows that advertising spending on the Internet and mobile media will increase annually by a mere 12 percent in 2013 and 2014, and then surge up to 22 percent between 2015 to 2017.This year will see the growth in digital and mobile media ads and is predicted to be much higher than most parts of the world. For the time being, Electronic media like Radio and Television ads in Africa will likely stay at the top of the ads growth list by the end of 2015, with a growth rate of 26.3 percent. In second place will be digital and mobile media, with 24.2 percent growth, followed by video games ads at 11.6 percent. The predicted growth of digital and mobile advertising in Africa will be highly affected by the shift in behavior of consumers. The research carried out in a period of eight months has predicted advertisers to spend most of their money on digital and mobile platforms. Starting from 2015, the spending on digital and mobile platforms in Africa will be higher than that on other forms of media.
Opportunities for advertisers in digital and mobile media in Africa is being enhanced by new models of digital ad-funded revenue, ranging from click through banner ads and pre roll ads on new video, as well as many other types. The share of Internet and mobile advertising revenue in Africa is still at the bottom of the media advertising revenue list, despite the boost in growth but that is changing fast. Statistics shows that Internet and cellphone usage will go up and down throughout the day, with huge traffic hours and late night hours as the peak. Different regions and countries have dynamic graphics in Internet and phone usage, and many people still access the Internet and use smartphones even in the late hours before sleeping. Increase in social networking usage has created immense opportunities for businesses in Africa, because close to half of consumers are openly interacting with brands and businesses in the social media and more than 50 percent of social network users are posting and reading about brands on the sites. In Africa, brands are treated as friends in the social media and marketers are busy designing their digital strategies to tap into the expected boom in digital media advertising business.