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APAC Spends Big on Rewarded Videos and Holiday Periods

Insights from Smaato’s Global In-App Advertising Trends Report Showcases APAC’s Penchant for Rewarded Video

Photo by Radu Mihai on Unsplash

Smaato, the global in-app advertising platform, shared further insights on APAC from its Global In-App Advertising Trends Report spotlight on the region.

With APAC on track to see a 25% increase in mobile ad spending in 2019, this edition of the report dives deep into the trends of importance for APAC from the first half of 2019. 

In-App eCPMs Across APAC 


CountryIndexed eCPM
1New Zealand220
2Australia184
3China156
4Singapore156
5South Korea148
6Indonesia92
7Malaysia84
8Thailand80
9Japan68
10India68
APAC Average 100

Comparing in-app eCPMs across APAC, Smaato found that the English-speaking markets of New Zealand and Australia topped the charts. This is possibly due to the ease with which advertisers can adapt existing in-app ad campaigns from other top global markets such as the UK and the US.  

Separately, China, Singapore and South Korea boast high eCPMs in the region due to their users’ unique in-app behaviour and usage.  

Video Consumption Is Driving Mobile Usage and In-App Ad Spending 

The report highlights significant video ad request growth from H1 2018 to H1 2019. The top five APAC markets that experienced the most significant growth were India, China, Thailand, South Korea and Indonesia. 


CountryVideo Ad Request Growth
1India281%
2China197%
3Thailand190%
4South Korea150%
5Indonesia 111%

Smaato notes that with mobile users in APAC spending more time in-app, and particularly within short-form video apps such as TikTok, advertisers are receiving an influx of video ad requests on which to bid. 

The report also showcases distinct regional differences between which video ad formats attracted the highest shares of ad spending. Rewarded video came out on top in APAC at 35% of total video ad spending, whereas it was the least used format in the Americas and EMEA at approximately 10% of video ad spending. 


Rewarded VideoInterstitial Outstream
APAC35%53%12%
EMEA11%54%36%
Americas 9%79%11%

The recent Smaato and Liftoff In-App Engagement and Conversion report highlights that amongst all in-app ad formats, video posted both the highest eCPMs and engagement rates. Rewarded video ads have particularly great ROI for advertisers, with 86% lower eCPMs than overall video while maintaining similar conversion rates. Marketers in APAC have already wised up to these advantages of rewarded video, ahead of their counterparts in other regions. One potential explanation for the predilection for rewarded video would be the popularity of mobile gaming in the region, as rewarded video tends to work well with the format. 

In-App Spending During Holiday Seasons in APAC 

The report also examined two major holiday periods in the region, Ramadan and Lunar New Year. Smaato discovered that in-app ad spending rose significantly during Ramadan. Average daily ad spending during the month of Ramadan was nearly 2.5 times higher than that of the month prior, a 143% increase. 

The Ramadan boost was most marked in Indonesia, with the country seeing an average increase in daily ad spending of 79%. Malaysia saw a rise of 38%, and Singapore achieved an 18% uplift. 

A spike in mobile usage during the Lunar New Year led to rising in-app ad requests to the Smaato platform during this celebratory period. China, for example, saw a 25% increase in daily in-app ad requests. 

Delynn Ho, General Manager, Smaato APAC says, “The holidays may represent a missed opportunity for marketers. An influx of in-app ad requests during the holiday period shows great potential to connect with mobile users who are using apps to exchange messages with friends, watch videos, play games and exchange virtual gifts and red envelopes.” 

To learn more, download the report here.

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