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5 Critical Takeaways From Mary Meeker's 2018 Internet Trends Report

Posted on by Jonathan Collins, Head of Data

Last week, Mary Meeker published her highly anticipated annual Internet Trends Report. It covers everything from internet usage, to e-commerce, economic growth, and consumer spending. If you don’t have time to digest all 294 slides, check out our key takeaways below.

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1. 0% New smartphone unit shipment growth in 2017.

Beyond the obvious implications of smartphone saturation, this statistic actually provides an important insight into the adoption rate of modern technologies. It took less than ten years for consumer-facing internet and smartphones to become common place, whereas it took 80 years for consumers to adopt the washing machine.

For marketers, this should be a reason to look at voice-assisted devices and other emerging technologies seriously as the adoption tipping point will now be a matter of a few years versus a decade or more.


2. On Average, adults spend 5.9 hours a day with digital media. Over half that time is spent on mobile (3.3 hours).

One thing that stands out for me on this slide is that desktop/laptop media consumption has actually not declined very much over the past ten years, meaning that the increase in mobile is largely additive. This reinforces the continuing need for cross-device targeting, and also explains why Criteo’s client base has tripled over the past few years.


3. Personal + Collective Data = Provide Better Experiences for Consumers.

The fact that data improves the consumer experience is not a surprise, but it was interesting to see it explicitly highlighted in the report, especially in light of recent data privacy concerns. The examples of Waze, Nextdoor, and Netflix are strong use cases for products that leverage shared data to create far better experiences than would otherwise exist. Transparency in data usage is important, but it is equally important that regulation not stifle innovation.   


4. Shift to mobile continues, A.K.A. The $7B Opportunity

What struck me about this statistic is not so much that mobile ad spending has not caught up with consumption, but rather how much is being overspent on print media.  While most other channels are relatively balanced between spend and consumption, print is way out of balance at 9% when it should be closer to 4%. That overage of 5% could and should be pushed to mobile and radio to balance out the market.


5. China leads the rest of the world with over 500 million active mobile payment users in 2017.

The fact that there are more mobile payment users in China than the entire population of Canada, the United States, and Mexico combined should be seen as a harbinger.  Though mobile payments are still relatively nascent in the North America, advances like facial recognition for payments, more mature wallet applications, and the growth of digital currencies will inevitably lead to fast growth.  For mobile advertisers, the implications for ROI and attribution are huge as more and more taps turn into transactions.

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Tagged mobile targeting, Audience, mary meeker

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