Election Day Brings Big Spending on Video Advertising

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Rubicon Project said the battle between red and blue had it seeing a lot of green.

The nine-year-old ad tech company said it cashed in on Election Day as well as the day after, setting company records for the amount of revenue generated from video advertising. Nov. 8 brought in the most video advertising ad dollars in its history, and Nov. 9 got the second-most, it said.

Most of that video money came via desktop browsers as usual, but there was a shift within mobile. Rubicon said 85% of its mobile video revenue came via apps and 15% from mobile browsers. Normally that split is 50-50. The suggestion is that people turned en masse to apps from the mobile web to follow election news.

The bulk of ad dollars came from news apps similar to ones like CNN and the New York Times. A Rubicon Project insider told Ad Age the increase was "so significant it was more than twice our daily average of video ad revenue."

Rubicon Project has been getting pummeled by investors after it said in July that it had been late in adopting a header bidding product; the company's stock has tumbled more than 40% since. It introduced its header bidding solution, called FastLane, last year. Rubicon Project is banking on bringing a header bidding solution to apps and video on a large scale, something that has yet to be achieved by any major ad tech platform. (The tech is predominantly practiced on desktop websites.)

In-app advertising is poised for significant growth, according to the analytics firm App Annie, which estimates that gross revenue across all app stores will exceed $101 billion globally by 2020. Meanwhile, video advertising on smartphones and tablets in the first half grew 178% over the year-earlier period to $1.6 billion, according to a November report by the Interactive Advertising Bureau.