Mumbai: DoubleVerify (DV), a leading software platform for digital media measurement, data, and analytics, has released its report for the year 2022, "Four Fundamental Shifts in Advertising and Media."
Two years after DV’s original report, this expanded edition analyses insights from over 16,600 global consumers in 18 countries. At a time of significant macroeconomic change, these findings reveal the dynamic relationships between consumers, digital content, and advertising—arming stakeholders with the insights they need to make well-informed strategic decisions.
The report marks some significant takeaways. Firstly, the economic downturn continues to ‘stay at home’ content consumption—particularly on CTV and social media—with most (55 per cent) consumers now spending more time consuming content daily than they did pre-pandemic.
Secondly, attention fuels media efficacy—two thirds (66 per cent) of respondents claimed an ad that captures their interest in the first five seconds will make them more likely to pay attention.
Thirdly, online shopping surges and is bolstered by a contextual approach—54 per cent of respondents report buying more items online now than pre-pandemic, while 67 per cent are more likely to pay attention to an ad if it’s relevant to the content they’re viewing—such as reviews or gift ideas.
Fourthly, trust and shared values foster loyalty, but consumers are quick to judge. Consumers are concerned about the spread of mis- and dis-information, and it shows—61 per cent are even less likely to purchase/use a brand again if they see it advertised alongside mis-/dis-information.
"This study highlights that consumer consumption habits are evolving in response to macro social and economic trends—from intensifying concerns about inflammatory or polarising content to a continued shift in the platforms and channels consumers are turning to for content consumption," said DoubleVerify CEO Mark Zagorski.
He continued, "Brands must react to these changing habits to ensure they reach the right audiences as efficiently as possible and maximise their digital investments. As our research shows, with digital content consumption rising, there’s a clear opportunity to garner consumer attention and power campaign performance. To unlock this opportunity, brands must evolve their ad strategies—meeting their audiences where they consume content and focusing on contextually relevant, attention-grabbing ad placements that also safeguard their brand reputations."
"In these hyper-evolving times, these insights are significant for brands wanting to boost their digital ROI. This is especially important in India, where the market is highly competitive and dynamic. As demonstrated in the findings, digital content consumption and post-pandemic online shopping are higher in India than in any other region. This presents a huge opportunity for marketers who need digital media strategies that can effectively reach relevant audiences while ensuring that they don’t inadvertently advertise/promote misinformation and disinformation," said DoubleVerify head of sales India Nachiket Deole.
He added, "This is the era of new-age consumers, who are more aware, conscious, and empowered than ever. Thus, we are working with clients to help them develop the best strategies to protect their brand reputations while achieving scale, and deliver on the desired outcomes of influencing the customers to convert to a purchase."
Consumer appetite for content continues to soar—led by CTV, streaming, and social
Globally, most consumers (55 per cent) are spending more time each day consuming content now than they did pre-pandemic. This is as high as 78 per cent in India, the highest of all regions surveyed. Inflation is a key driver, with almost half (45 per cent) of respondents globally noting the reason they’re spending more time consuming digital content is because they are staying at home due to the rising cost of living.
CTV (connected TV) and streaming services have clear momentum, with 55 per cent of respondents having subscribed to additional services in the past 12 months. The increase in sign-ups is strongest in India, where 74 per cent have subscribed to additional services in the last twelve months. Meanwhile, globally, 27 per cent expect to spend more time on social media in the year ahead—peaking at 41 per cent among 18-24 year-olds.
With costs under consumer scrutiny and digital content consumption rising, ad-supported content represents a growing opportunity for advertisers, with 59 per cent open to ad-supported video streaming apps if they cut prices.
Brands must address attention fragmentation—or risk losing consumers
Survey respondents reported that they believe they see between one and 50 ads per day—estimates suggest the true average figure is at least 4,000.
Where an ad appears determines its impact, according to consumers. YouTube dominates as the number one proprietary platform for securing the attention of respondents in 15 out of 18 countries surveyed—followed by Facebook (39 per cent) and Instagram (28 per cent). Newer platforms continue to attract consumer attention and engagement. TikTok is rapidly expanding, and 43 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds say they intend to spend more time on the app in the coming year.
Timing is essential, with two thirds (66 per cent) stating that they are more likely to pay attention if an ad captures their interest in the first five seconds.
Shopping’s digital maturity presents a new opportunity for brands to make an impact
Online shopping continues to grow, as most consumers—54 per cent, report buying more items online now than they did before the pandemic. Meanwhile, consumers in emerging markets are more likely than the general population to say they are shopping online more now than they were before the pandemic, with Indians leading the pack at 74 per cent.
Pre-purchase habits are also evolving, with over half (53 per cent) highlighting that they use digital content to inform planned purchases more often than they did before the pandemic—in India, this is a notable 75 per cent. With two thirds (67 per cent) of consumers saying they are more likely to pay attention to an ad if it’s relevant to the content they’re looking at—like reviews or gift ideas. This reinforces the importance of contextually relevant ad placements.
Brand values are key as consumers reward action against inflammatory content, mis- and dis-information
Likely exacerbated by polarised news and opinions, the majority of survey respondents (68 per cent) are concerned that levels of mis/disinformation are increasing—and brands must be conscious of ad adjacency. In fact, 61 per cent would be less likely to purchase/use the brand again if they saw it advertised next to content that they determined to be mis-/dis-information. In India, this is 63 per cent.
The majority of survey respondents (82 per cent) state they have been exposed at some point to mis-/dis- information on social media.
Brand action on mis-/dis-information will be rewarded with trust from consumers. The majority (69 per cent) value brands that actively fight against mis-/dis-information and the same number (69 per cent) state that companies that are genuine and authentic appeal to them.