What better way to target and advertise to mobile phone users than right on their device! That this is a real and tangible form of advertising can be seen in Google’s acquisition last year of mobile advertising aggregator Admob for $750 million, and Apple’s acquisition of Quattro’s mobile ad network for $275 million. Also, don’t forget Apple’s announcement of their own iPad advertising network.
Mobile advertising aggregators have access to numerous mobile channels, whether in the form of text message campaigners, mobile websites or on device apps such as for iPhone, Android and Blackberry devices. Ads are sent down in text or banner form. Mobile banner ads can have click to call functionality, or move the user to the advertiser’s mobile website or offer. Ads can typically be targeted by way of demographics, location and type of device.
As an example, download the CBS news app or go to CBSNews mobile and you will see advertising banners at the top or bottom of the page. The ad serving engine is smart enough to realize the type of phone that is being used to view the content, and for my phone was able to send a banner from Bank of America, advertising their new mobile banking app specific for the Android phone from which I accessed the site.
This type of advertising is powerful! Being able to send content that is user, device and mobile relevant increases the probability of effectiveness and marketing efficiencies. In addition, the click through possibilities for mobile ads to click to call, click to IVR, click for deliverables, and more, extends the value of the advertisement to be an interactive experience that benefits from the technology integrated into mobile devices – not possible through print, radio, television or even email advertising.
In this way the mobile device and the ad networks that serve it are replicating traditional communications channels such television and radio, but adapted for a new technology. Notably, this adaptation is benefiting from the nature of the mobile phone as the most personal of mediums, where even though a user may change their device or carrier, they are unlikely to change their telephone number or mobile logins – the starting point for many mobile campaigns that seek to develop ongoing relationships with their mobile consumers.
Mobile devices are with users 24/7, being always on, always available. The ability to serve relevant ads directly to this user tied medium is of incredible value. The ability to leverage the demographics of the user, optimize for the user’s device and utilize information garnered from previous interactions with the user in the mobile relationship is… priceless. (and yes, Mastercard has been reported as a mobile channel app participant)