MENA Online advertising – 37% growth in 2013

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MENA online advertising is growing at an unprecedented rate of 37 percent and is expected to hit USD 2.8 billion in 2016. As the region plays ‘catch-up’ with other world markets, the potential for meteoric growth in the sector is clear.

Eye ball
Eyeball retention is the single most important factor that determine sthe amount that advertisers will be spending on online content. Middle East and North Africa (MENA) online advertising is growing at exponential rates, as the region races to catch-up with other nations, with new emerging markets UAE and Qatar leading the growth. Photo: Sean Dreilinger

“We are living in times when the ones who fail to keep up pace will stand to lose business. It’s the law of the survival of the fastest,” says Omar Christidis, founder and CEO of ArabNet. “That’s why we are gathering industry leaders and digital experts to discuss these critical issues during the ArabNet Digital Summit 2013 on June 24-26 at Atlantis, The Palm, in Dubai.”

Designing integrated digital campaigns is one of the hottest topics resonating within the industry these days. Some 48 percent of computer users watch TV, and are also using their mobile or tablet at the same time each day. That figure rises to a staggering 85 percent if we factor in how many users do this per month. The adoption and use of online technologies and services, particularly in mobile services, is showing stellar growth.

As Maud Moawad, CEO, Maddict, points out: “Mobile display advertising for tablets and smartphones will increase at a rate of 40 to 50% yearly. The growth experienced over the last 9 months was above 60%.”

With the growing number of available platforms, brands are now looking for new opportunities in the ever-developing digital space. The ArabNet Digital Summit will discuss ways for agencies to engage users across multiple platforms, screens, and mediums within their campaigns. The Summit will delve into yet another hot topic in the industry—the future of digital video.

“Experts estimate we will have 6 million years of online video by 2016.”

Mobile video is particularly prominent in the MENA region, with 37 percent of online consumers watching video on mobile phones at least once a day.

“Video consumption in our region exceeds international rates, with on-demand viewing and online video now more accessible,” says Omar. “What are content owners and distributors doing to stay ahead of the curve? These are some of the questions that the Digital Summit seeks to answer.

More than 57 percent of companies in the Middle East are increasing their digital marketing spending this year and 27 percent of this increase is spent on social media marketing. Social media platforms, including Facebook and LinkedIn, alongside leading media agencies, such as OMD and Starcom, will share their best practices and case studies at the ArabNet Digital Summit, including a series of back-to-back presentations on the latest research in social media. The conference will also investigate new platforms that facilitate listening and sentiment analysis by tracking communication, feedback, and real-time analytics accurately and efficiently.

“The role of the agencies and the relationship between brands and their customers is being redefined by digital technologies,” says Omar. “Media and advertising companies must enrich their digital competencies and offerings and understand emerging media platforms to stay relevant.”

Taking place between the 24th-26th June at the Atlantis Hotel, The Palm, Dubai, The ArabNet Digital Summit will help business executives, entrepreneurs, marketers and investors tap into the latest trends and opportunities in digital business, covering social, mobile, commerce and media and advertising, both on a regional and global level. The event is expected to bring together over 1,000 entrepreneurs, executives, experts, investors and media representatives to meet and share insights over the three day programme.

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