January may represent the New Year, but it also highlights an important time for some advertisers: when you'll receive your W-2. Historically, we’ve seen this ramp up around the second week of January, and 2016 was no exception with TurboTax and H&R Block leading the way. It's a virtual certainty tax software companies will continue to dominate the top advertiser rankings through the end of the quarter.
SlingTV (by Dish) continued strong into the New Year with direct pushes on desktop and mobile, keeping its momentum. Also, the auto category dropped from December by impression volume across devices, with new top categories emerging on desktop, mobile+tablet and video. Read on for more insights behind January’s top digital advertisers and download the full report here.
Tax Season Begins!
TurboTax dominated January with heavy impression spikes on desktop and mobile+tablet starting on January 17th, with video ads peaking towards the end of the month on January 30th. Favoring direct buys, 95% of desktop impressions were purchased direct as were 75% of mobile impressions. On video, TurboTax preferred ad network channels, accounting for 64% of impressions, with 22% share going to Yahoo! Advertising. No surprise that yahoo.com was the either the first or second top site for the brand across devices.
As for creatives, the tax giant released 50% more desktop creatives during the month compared to January 2015, and with a darker color scheme:
Left: 2015 Display ad; Right: 2016 Display ad. Source: Pathmatics US Desktop Data.
SlingTV Starts 2016 Off Strong
Although SlingTV (by Dish) dropped a few spots on desktop from December, the one-year-old company must be doing something right, as the OTT device is still packing a punch across devices, having just reported garnering over 600,000 subscribers to date.
On desktop, SlingTV released 231 unique creatives in January on an average of 1,266 sites per day. 51% of desktop impressions were purchased direct, followed by 27% purchased via ad networks. Reddit.com was their top desktop site by far, with 34% of the brand’s total-site impression share. Amazon.com followed with 13% of total-site impression share.
Source: Pathmatics US Desktop Data.
Media Takes Top Video Advertising Category
The media category leapt out of nowhere, taking the top category on video during the month of January (by impression volume). Showtime led the way, promoting its new show, Billions, heavily on youtube.com, accounting for 73% of total-site impression share as Shameless, Dark Net and The Circus ads comprised the rest of the 75 total unique video creatives released by the network.
USA Network similarly made its mark on youtube.com as their top video site with 84% of total-site impression share, leading up to the release of its new show, Colony, which premiered on January 14th.
Source: Pathmatics US Video Data.
*By impression volume. **All trademarks & copyrights property of their respective owners.