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Advertisers in Indonesia saw brand risk levels rise in 2020, which saw the country receiving the highest brand risk globally on desktop and mobile web display.

Meanwhile, other APAC markets like Japan recorded an increase of 2.4% to 5.6%, Singapore 2.4% and Vietnam at 2.5%.

This is according to the Integral Ad Science’s Media Quality Report (MQR) for the second half (H2) of 2020, providing transparency into the performance and quality of digital media across the Asia Pacific region, alongside global comparisons.

“We’ve measured high levels of brand risk in APAC, especially Indonesia, and we encourage clients to not just monitor but optimize away from unsuitable environments that don’t meet their brand values,” said Laura Quigley, the senior vice president for APAC at Integral Ad Science.

“Brand risk is a very important metric to consider and has a direct impact on a brand’s reputation and value. 2020 introduced additional risky content, and marketers were divided on their approach. Some advertisers in APAC continued to run their advertising adjacent to coronavirus content, whereas some withdrew for a short period. As the situation evolved, marketers adopted a more nuanced approach, not just blocking but also considering the context and sentiment of the adjacent content to drive audience engagement in high-quality, contextually suitable environments.”

She added: “Programmatic pre-bid targeting facilitates buying quality impressions and reducing wastage. As we emerge from the challenges of 2020, marketers must remember to regularly update their brand suitability settings. There is a strong pivot in the market towards brand suitability and contextual targeting is a viable, privacy-compliant solution for driving efficiencies, engagement and ROI.”

What did the MQR found?

  • For mobile web display, the brand risk in Indonesia reached 16% in the H2 of 2020, two and a half times higher than the worldwide average of 5.8%.

  • Singapore and Vietnam for the same period reported lower brand risk levels of 3.5% and 3.0% respectively, whereas Japan and Australia increased 2.8% (to 10.4%) and 1.7% (to 4.2%) respectively.

  • Video impressions witnessed an increased brand risk worldwide in H2 2020, a trend that tended to correlate to video ad impression volumes throughout the second half of the year.

  • This indicates a correlation between brand risk and increased video consumption because globally most consumers were under lockdown. Adult content was the primary driver of increased brand risk across all formats worldwide, often followed by hate speech, a reflection of turbulent news cycles globally.

  • Viewability rose most in mobile app display environments, reaching a 72.1% worldwide average because of wider adoption of the IAB Tech Lab’s Open Measurement Software Development Kit (OM SDK).

  • Australia was the only APAC market that saw mobile app display viewability rise from 69.9% in H2 2019 to 73.0% in H2 2020, an increase of 3.1%. New Zealand reported a drastic reduction in mobile app display viewability, down 12.4% to 49.8% in H2 2020; the lowest globally.

  • For other countries in the APAC region, mobile app display numbers were lower than the global average in H2 2020. India reported mobile app display viewability of 50.8%, Indonesia 65.2%, Singapore 69.9%.

  • Global ad fraud rates improved overall in H2 of 2020. Japan and Australia were the only markets to witness significant increases in ad fraud rates.

  • Japan experienced increases in optimised-against-ad-fraud rates for display impressions in both desktop and mobile web environments. Australia also witnessed an increase, particularly for desktop video, which saw an optimised-against-ad-fraud rate of 1.6%, twice the average rate a year earlier. 

  • For desktop display in H2 2020, Japan had the highest ad fraud rate globally at 2.9%, followed by Singapore at 2.6%, while the worldwide average was at 0.8%.