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Guest Column: The pertinent growth of online advertising in India

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Guest Column: The pertinent growth of online advertising in India

Adoption of Internet in India is growing at an unprecedented rate and the Digital Media Industry has cashed in on this as it’s standing in the midst of immense growth, with a speed that’s way faster than any other media avenues. It has become inevitable for advertisers, agencies and ad networks to harness this, in the wake of a pertinent digixplosion.

The Indian advertising industry currently stands at Rs. 56,398 crore, predicted to grow at a rate of 14 per cent by 2017. The digital advertising section stands at Rs. 6,825 crore with a growth rate of 37 per cent credited to an increase in consumer adoption of mobile phones, along with increased Internet usage. Digital media has always been viewed as the harbinger of growth for the advertising industry in India. An increasing proportion of marketing budget is being spent on digital media yearly to match the increasing kinship of the consumers towards an elevated digital experience. With the smartphone becoming increasingly affordable, digital screens are set to become the primary source of media consumption in the Indian digital world.

For most users, the Internet has become a key platform to generate conversation thanks to social networking, e-mails, web browsing, entertainment and so on. In past few years, consumers have grown to accept mobile devices as an integral medium of communication and added them as an extension for life. They have become a popular medium for gaining information about new or existing products and services in the market, information on current trends, happenings and keeping consumers updated. The rural sector has also been influenced as mobile devices emerged as the de-facto screen for the rural population. Affordability alongside lack of electricity have made mobiles an apt replacement for television. From the consumer’s research perspective, there has been a shift in the trend from offline research to online research. The collective intelligence of online review sites and social media has allowed consumers to easily access second opinions. As consumers increasingly seek inferences and voice their grievances on online sources before buying, it becomes easy for brands to attract traffic and thereby pitching mobile advertising as a hot property. Mobile advertisements have become popular as they are catchy, innovative and convey the message clearly with rapid reach over a limited budget.

Among industry verticals, the e-commerce sector contributes the highest proportion (25 per cent) of its overall marketing budget in digital media. The share of spends on digital media is expected to reach 24 per cent by 2020 from the current 12 per cent. This growth will be powered by a shift from traditional mediums to digital mediums due to greater effectiveness and benefits of hyper-targeting.

The Indian digital advertising industry has greater catching up to do with the global advertising industry owing to data issues like the reliability and quality of data, optimum usage of data, data applications and more. Differences between the two markets also crop up due to socio-economic gaps and factor conditions. While other markets are plagued by a demand deficiency, Indian market is plagued by a supply deficiency and advertising will always be dependent on the nature of a market. Yet, when quality of digital engagement and creativity is taken into consideration, the Indian advertising market stands at par with the global advertising market. Hence, the perspective is not so bleak and can be enhanced with the improvement in market standings, to support the industry.

Raja Chakraborty is the Co-Founder of Streamlyn.

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not in any way represent the views of

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