Growth of mobile advertising expenditure in Spain remains stagnant – positive outlook for social media adverts

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Digital was the only sector to see a healthy increase in Spain’s advertising industry, according to the latest figures from the Interactive Advertising Bureau Spain (IAB Spain) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) compiled by eMarketer.

Digital, which includes mobile, desktop, digital out-of-home, digital audio and connected TV accounted for 29% of all outlays in the country last year, and digital platforms increased 21.5% to $1.74 billion. Television got boosted 5.5% to $2.35 billion. Desktop and mobile make up the majority of digital ad spend in Spain at 97.5% or $1.7 billion.

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However, ad expenditure’s share for mobile devices remained stagnant compared to 2015 making up 5.8% of total spend and rising to $99.9 million.

Among the categorical top spenders in mobile advertising are automotive brands at 34.7% as well as travel, transport and tourism businesses (12.9%). Food and drinks followed closely at 12.5%.

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The report found that Spanish mobile advertisers tend to favour mobile web over apps.

Additional research by IAB Spain in collaboration with Adglow and Elogia offered some insights into the social media usage of Spanish consumers.

86% of Internet users (or 19 million of Spanish consumers) between the ages of 16 to 65 years are using social networks. That’s an increase of 5% over 2016.

Facebook is the dominant social network (91%), followed by WhatsApp (89%), YouTube (71%) and Twitter (50%). Instagram has also made some significant gains in the country, up 11 percentage points.

Most frequently, consumers are using social media sites to chat or communicate (67%), whilst 59% also watch videos and listen to music and 47% enjoy new contacts.

Importantly for advertisers, 83% of Spanish social media users say the follow at least one brand on their social networks to stay informed about products and/or services. Among the top followed sectors are entertainment (66%), travel, transport and tourism (44%), and technology and communication (41%). One in four respondents said that a presence on social media increases their confidence in a brand. Another 40% added that they had no problem sharing information with brands for promotional purposes.

Interestingly, 39% of social media users aren’t bothered by adverts, with banners still being the preferred format across social sites.

26% agree that adverts are in line with their interests and 47% admitted that ads also met their expectations. Those are some positive signs for social media advertisers.

When asked about their frequency preferences for adverts, most users consider once a week to be ideal.

Antonio Traugott, Managing Director of IAB Spain explains that social media networks are presenting growing importance for brand advertisers.

Juan Domínguez, CEO and founder of Adglow adds:

“Of the 22 million users that are registered Internet users in Spain, 19 million are impacted by campaigns on social networks. This shows that these platforms are an extraordinary vehicle of entry of the brands to consolidate their presence on the Internet. Its high diffusion capacity and precision in segmentation, with an increase in penetration of 6% during 2017, provide a comfortable environment for both users and companies.”