Display & Programmatic Advertising

Marin Software Research Shows Search Spend Growing and Instagram Thriving in Q3 2018


Marin Software, a leading provider of digital marketing software for performance-driven advertisers and agencies, today released research findings from its global Q3 2018 Digital Advertising Benchmark Report. While search spend increased globally, growth was lower in Europe. Separately, Instagram revealed itself as an up-and-coming target for advertising dollars, with Instagram Stories being a preferred ad format.

Marin Software presents its full research, results, and takeaways in an interactive format that allows viewers to review and analyze ad spending trends by region, industry, and publisher. Key findings include:

  • Instagram Gaining Momentum: In Q3 2018, Instagram received almost 16% of total Facebook spend, with Facebook’s news feed accounting for over 80%. Instagram Stories was the most popular ad format, accounting for 25% of all ads on the photo and video-sharing platform. Due to its rich ad format, deeper level of user engagement, and less crowded feed environment, advertisers are willing to pay a substantial premium for Instagram ad placements over Facebook. This includes a $0.82 CPC on Instagram, four times higher than the $0.19 CPC on Facebook.
  • Global Search Spend Barrels Ahead: Following the trend in previous quarters, global search spend continued to show robust health. With 13% year-over-year (YoY) growth, it was driven almost equally by increased click volume and rising CPCs, with the average global CPC increasing from $0.80 in Q3 2017 to $0.83 in Q3 2018.
  • European Paid Search Slows Down: Anomalous to increased global search spend, eurozone growth was relatively meager at 5.7% YoY in Q3 2018. Europe also saw lower CPCs than the global average, with a $0.44 CPC in Q3 2018 compared to the global average of $0.83. With the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) wrapping up its first full quarter, lingering privacy concerns may be taking a toll on the European search advertising market.
  • Shopping Ads Gain Share: Shopping ads captured 37% of the average retailer’s search spend, eclipsing the 36% observed in Q3 2017. The expectation is that dynamic ads will continue to take share from traditional text ads in Shopping and other verticals.

“Instagram’s boom was one exciting area of digital advertising growth we witnessed this quarter. This year alone, Instagram jumped from five to 15 percent of our customers’ Facebook spend,” said Wesley MacLaggan, SVP of Marketing at Marin Software. “We expect this trend to continue, especially with recent news of Instagram enhancing its eCommerce features. With the rise of Amazon and the success of Google Shopping Ads, eCommerce has quickly emerged as a third pillar of digital advertising, and it’s clear that Facebook is looking to get in on the action. As a result, search, social, and eCommerce will continue to blend together, and marketers will need to have a complete view of the customer journey if they hope to more accurately understand campaign performance and attribution.”

To create its Q3 2018 Digital Advertising Benchmark Report, Marin Software aggregated data from customers who invest billions of dollars in combined annualized ad spend on paid search, social, mobile, and eCommerce. Marin Software only includes those advertisers active on its platform for the past five quarters, measuring key performance indicators on a year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter basis, and removing any outliers with significant YoY or QoQ changes.

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About Marin Software
Marin Software Incorporated’s (NASDAQ: MRIN) mission is to give advertisers the power to drive higher efficiency and transparency in their paid marketing programs that run on the world’s largest publishers. Marin Software offers a unified SaaS ad management platform for search, social, and eCommerce advertising. We help digital marketers convert precise audiences, improve financial performance, and make better decisions. Headquartered in San Francisco with offices worldwide, Marin Software’s technology powers marketing campaigns around the globe. For more information about Marin Software, please visit www.marinsoftware.com.

Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, including, among other things, statements regarding Marin’s business, research, and product capabilities. These forward-looking statements are only predictions and may differ materially from actual results due to a variety of factors including, but not limited to, our ability to grow sales and marketing capabilities, retain and attract personnel, develop and release new features, increasing competition in our market, fluctuations in our operating results and inability to forecast financial metrics, and other general market, political, economic, and business conditions.

These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and are subject to uncertainties and changes in condition, significance, value, and effect as well as other risks and uncertainties detailed in documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our most recent report on Form 10-K, recent reports on Form 10-Q, and current reports on Form 8-K which Marin Software may file from time to time, all of which are available free of charge at the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov. Any of these risks could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations set forth in the forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements in this press release reflect Marin Software’s expectations as of October 17, 2018. Marin Software assumes no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any obligation to update, any such forward-looking statements after the date of this release.

SOURCE Marin Software
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