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Datareportal reveals key trends in the digital space for its April 2022 global report.

Simon Kemp, CEO of digital market intelligence firm Kepios and the producer of Datareportal, tells marketers to exercise caution when it comes to the headlines of the digital world.

One of the biggest headlines spreading through the digital marketing space include “Facebook is dying off.”

For the record, Facebook is not dying, according to Kemp. In fact, 32 million users signed up for the social media platform in the first quarter of 2022, which is a sizable number.

“Facebook remains the most widely-used social media platform”, says Kemp, “with teenagers comprising a large portion of first quarter growth”.

He advises marketers to explore the stats before making changes to their digital marketing strategies.

It’s an important reminder for all of us, as marketers with too little time to really dig the stats,” says Kemp. “Be very wary of relying on headlines, especially clickbait headlines to build your media plan,” he continues.

Kemp, presented these findings and more at the Greater event Digital 2022: April Global Statshot, held at the Great Room.

Datareportal’s reports provide data and analyses of online behaviours around the world to millions of readers in more than 230 countries. 

All reports are produced by Kemp and his Kepios team, as well as third party sources and partners such as Hootsuite and We Are Social.

Here are some noteworthy takeaways from the event:

Courtesy of DataReportal

Time to get on the Netflix ads

Netflix has announced that it will debut ads as soon as this year. Previously, it announced a clampdown on shared subscriber passwords, resulting in an immense loss in subscribers. “Ads will feature in some, but not all of its subscription plans”, notes Kemp.

Streaming services comprise 44 percent of time spent online as at 3Q2021. With Netflix and its counterparts featuring so heavily in our lives, it’s time for advertisers to plan their first move in capturing their TV audiences.

My tip is have a discussion with the platforms now, if you’re interested in doing any kind of video advertising,” says Kemp. “Be ready when they launch those things because what you don’t want to be doing is clamouring for it,” he continues.

The surge of TikTok Coin spend and what it means

TikTok’s adult audience is currently growing at a rate of almost 1 million new users every day. In addition, TikTok has reported a US$2.2 billion spend on TikTok coins for 2021.

TikTok coins are an in-app currency purchased by end users to “tip” creators, akin to throwing some coins into a busker’s guitar case. Users are tipping creators “for content they could have watched for free”.

But what does it all mean for marketers?

Kemp says the real competition for marketers is what’s on the users’ feeds, and not the biggest company in the ad space. “Creating stuff that is worthy of earning tips is the benchmark – it is a meaningful metric to measure the quality of your success on these [digital] platforms,” he adds.

That’s where marketers have to decide whether it is even worthwhile to create content for TikTok. The space is extremely competitive despite the immense rewards.

The digital wild west that is the African subcontinent

Some countries in Africa are the least connected places on earth, where Internet adoption is below 25 percent of the population. Data in some areas is so expensive that many Africans simply can’t afford to pay for it.

For instance, the Alliance for Affordable Internet reports that mobile data in Central Africa Republic costs almost a quarter (24.59 percent) of the country’s average monthly income for 1 GB of mobile data. This compares to the United States, where 1 GB of mobile data costs 0.7 percent of the average monthly income.

The lack of electricity plays a part in the low Internet adoption rates too,” says Kemp. He adds that while Internet use in Africa is far removed from our lives, the region holds great potential for digitisation and connectivity.

For someone like Google to continue growing, they need to address these challenges of cost and infrastructure,” says Kemp. As a result, these tech giants may churn out new game-changing products and services to address said challenges.

“Marketers need to keep an eye on such developments, because there’s a good chance they may end up using these new products and services themselves”, notes Kemp.

Don’t jump on the NFT bandwagon just yet

Kemp is sceptical about the future of non-fungible tokens, or NFTs. Unless you’re an artist or a creator, there is no mainstream use for it for now.

Trading activity for NFTs has also dropped 90 percent in the last six months, which is quite scary,” says Kemp. “There are now five NFTs for every person, so there is also a lot of saturation going on in the market right now,” he continues.

Unfortunately, there is too much noise to cut through within the NFT world, making it a tricky space and a potential time-waster for marketers. There is simply not enough scale in NFTs for marketers to make the leap.

By all means, experiment with this stuff, but be very clear in how you add value, instead of creating an NFT for the sake of it ” he says.

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