Online Advertising Trends


Support client pitches to promote digital marketing services via providing insight on the leading trends in online advertising. The research should be based in the United States and/or be case studies of unique strategies companies are using.

Early Findings

  • Digital marketing contains four elements: outbound marketing (search and display advertisements), inbound marketing, social media networks, and the mobile revolution.
  • Much of digital marketing is about being transparent and authentic, since reaction is real-time and is always on. To maintain the level of engagement needed on digital, brands have to be clear about their goals and values. This is especially important in the time of "cancel culture".
  • Some questions that need to be asked are, What are our goals? What platforms should be used? What is the content strategy? And finally, is the organization really built to talk to an audience in real time?"
  • The top four platforms are YouTube (used by 73% of US adults), Facebook (used by 69% of US adults), Instagram (used by 37% of US adults) and Pinterest (used by 28% of US adults). However, usage varies wildly by demographic. For example, 67% of 18-29-year-olds use Instagram and 42% of women are on Pinterest- almost double the average for those platforms.


  • Consumer Privacy: Initially making news due to Europe's GDPR, California soon followed suit with its privacy law which went into effect on January 1 of this year. Even Apple has felt the winds of change and created an ad based entirely on selling privacy.
  • Short Form Content: Tiktok continues to be unstoppable, and Quibi has just burst onto the scene as well. IG stories, FB stories, and Snap are also alive and well. Short form, personalized content will only grow in popularity.
  • Shoppable Posts: According to Instagram, 90% of their users already follow active shopping brands. Shoppable posts lessen the friction between the user and the purchase moment, making conversion- and measurement- much easier for brands.

Research proposal:

Only the project owner can select the next research path.
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