96% of US publishers offer branded content opportunities compared to 62% in UK

By Ishbel Macleod | PR and social media consultant

May 27, 2014 | 2 min read

Cross-platform optimisation is essential for digital advertising to reach its full potential, a new report from Brand Perfect has found, with a 15 per cent increase in cross-platform optimisation across publisher websites in the past year.

The report, The New Dynamics of Advertising 2014, examines website performance on different devices of 100 of the top consumer magazine titles in the US and the UK.

Neil Ayres, editor of Brand Perfect, said, “A 15 per cent increase in device-neutral sites over a 12-month period is only faintly encouraging; however, creating as it does a mixed economy of have and have-not publishing brands. It can only be hoped that magazine brands that have not yet adapted their websites for mobile audiences are poised to do so. If they’re not, it’s hard to see how they won’t be left behind.”

Brand Perfect notes how new advertising standards in the US and UK mean that online advertising is likely to begin to be traded and measured using viewability metrics rather than just impressions. This new approach considers that for an advert to be considered viewable, 50 per cent of its pixels must show up in the visible portion of a browser for at least one second.

Branded content, native or advertorials, fit the viewability criteria and this is an area in which, according to the report, the US is currently 34 per cent ahead of the UK, with 96 per cent of publishers offering branded content opportunities compared to 62 per cent in the UK.

Many news sites now use branded content – including Buzzfeed and the Guardian, with the latter signing a seven-figure deal with Unilever earlier this year to create bespoke content.

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