The State of Digital Advertising

The State of Digital Advertising
Brian McHale
The State of Digital Advertising

There are many different types of digital ads, each help advertisers to execute on a certain type of goal. Some lead users to a website, others direct users to make a purchase, and most are cleverly served to match a user’s profile, interests, or demographics. That’s why advertisers value them so highly. They help us target our customers with precision and impact their purchase decisions when it’s most relevant. Here’s an overview of four of the most common types:

1. Search Engine Marketing

Search Engine Marketing

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a great way to target consumers who are actively seeking a product or service. Google is the gorilla in this room. They run 75,000 searches per second and are preferred by 92.54% of users. If you add in others like Bing and Yahoo the overall search rate increases to 96.62% of users says

Within SEM we also have Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising.

SEO is a set of techniques and strategies to gather organic traffic to your website using links, keywords, and quality content relevant to readers.

PPC allows marketers to only pay for users who click on their ads for more information, as you can see in the example above. This is a highly efficient way to stretch your marketing budget by focusing only on consumers who engage with your ad.

2. Display, Video, and Audio

Display advertising relies on images and text to attract the user’s attention, and online follows suit- using shorter video content displayed on websites to attract users’ attention. Ads are placed on specific websites that match the demographics and psychographics of the desired target audience. Online video ads can run on websites alongside display ads, or prior to videos in a more video centric environment. Static banner display ads are the most common, but advertisers also have the option to create animated, video, and interactive ads to capture more attention in the cluttered digital environment.

CTV (connected TV)/ OTT (over the top) advertising is now more prevalent than ever and allow advertisers an opportunity to run commercial length and quality ads to a digital viewer, wherever they are watching- large screen TVs, mobile, or tablets.

Digital Audio advertising is on the rise, as consumers are continuing to lean into podcasting and paid streaming services. Digital Audio allows advertisers to customize targeting with the precision of display and video opportunities.

Papa John's

3. Social Media Advertising

Social Media

According to, the number of active monthly users on Facebook is over 2.9 billion as of Q1 of 2022. YouTube, WhatsApp, and Instagram account for over 5 billion monthly active users combined. On average, studies have shown that users of these channels spend nearly one hour per day watching content. It’s no coincidence that advertisers are increasing budget allocations to these channels. Dollars go where consumers’ eyeballs are, and social media ads are relatively low in cost, so companies can efficiently target their customers and track results of how the campaign performed.

Targeting on social media, however, may be getting a bit more difficult as Apple recently announced that their latest mobile operating system will make it harder to target advertisement at users, possibly cutting into revenue for businesses that rely on such ads. However, Facebook has taken exception to the changes resulting in a public feud between the two companies. Apple said in a statement that through the changes, the company is standing up for its customers, who should be aware of when and what data is collected and shared.

4. Email Marketing

You may feel that email is becoming a dinosaur. A relic of the early digital age. But it’s not so. According to Statista, the use of email marketing is growing between 2% and 3% per year until 2023. A survey from Adestra showed that 73% of millennials prefer the use of email to communicate with companies and a DMA Insight study indicated that 99% of consumers still check their email daily.

In order to garnish the average ROI of $40 for every $1 spent, a brand needs to have these four areas figured out: gather qualified subscribers, engage with the public, keep the audience engaged and have automation tools to help.


Digital Ad Spending Continues to Rise

By the end of 2023, total advertising spending in the U.S. is projected to reach $200 billion; $80 billion being invested in digital advertising There’s a good reason for that shift. Digital advertising is generating strong results. Strategies to employ digital ads vary by industry and company, but if your company isn’t taking advantage of these trends, you may be missing out. The next time you see a digital ad, take a moment to think about how and why that company targeted you; and if it was an investment well spent.