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Britons now spend one in every 12 waking minutes online as mobile advertising spend reaches record £3bn+ in six months

A new study into Britain's online habits has found that consumers now average 43 hours a month online, equivalent to one in every 12 waking minutes of their lives – fuelling a record six months spend of £3.04bn by advertisers.

The Internet Advertising Bureau’s Digital Adspend report drilled down into this data to show that 22 per cent of this time is spent on entertainment whilst social networks and blogging take up 12 per cent of the total.

Mobiles voracious growth showed no sign of abating either as its share of total ad spend doubled over the year, growing 127 per cent like-for-like to £429.2m in the first half of 2013.

Tim Elkington, director of research & strategy at the Internet Advertising Bureau, said: “Nothing illustrates the internet as an entertainment platform better than the fact that over one in five minutes online is accounted for by entertainment, and that advertisers spent almost 1,300 per cent more on mobile video than a year ago. With smartphone penetration crossing the two-thirds landmark and the successful roll out of 4G, 2013 could be the year when advertising spend on mobile crosses the £1bn threshold.”

Simon Davies, sales director for Microsoft Advertising & Online, UK, said that he expected total Adspend for the year to hit £6bn, if it continued at the same pace.

"The industry is only just waking up to realise the need for engaging content on all screens, and we will continue to help our clients create seamless experiences across all of our devices and service," he continued. "Second screening is more prevalent than ever before and mobile advertising is steaming ahead, making up for 20 per cent of the entire digital display market - I predict the remaining half of 2013 will see an increased creative consideration of smaller screens, complimenting and augmenting the traditional mediums such as television.

"As technology becomes smarter and media owners invest in making search advertising more accessible and transparent, the evolution of platforms such as Windows 8.1. indicates the possibilities of convergence between search and display in the future. The 86 per cent year-on-year increase in video advertising is also proof of how advertising and content marketing are continuing to blur into one.

As brands test the waters of new advertising formats across these emerging growth areas, the industry needs to listen carefully to consumer demands and learn from each other’s successes and failures. It’s up to us now to understand the continuing evolution of consumer digital behaviour in order to fully utilise the opportunities available.”

John Glenday

John Glenday is responsible for compiling The Drum's daily morning bulletin and ensuring that overnight breaking news is covered while you're still brushing your teeth. Can also make a mean cup of tea.

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