Mobile Brains Reaching Mobile Brains

by Net Future Institute on January 16, 2013

The sophistication and complexity of getting the best and most effective ads to the mobile consumer bring to light a few issues, from different ends of the spectrum.

This was made clearer in the new Adfonic AdSnap study on mobile real-time bidding, highlighted earlier this week in MediaPost’s new RTM newsletter. The research showed that mobile RTB provides significantly higher click-through rates than mobile ads placed traditionally.

The study included several data points, such as an average uplift of 231 percent for Style and Fashion advertising and an average click-through rate increase of 97 percent compared to non-real-time bidding.

It’s a case of mobile brains reaching mobile brains. The algorithmic brains of the bidding systems are matching the real-time activities (ad viewing) of mobile consumers and adapting accordingly.

But the delivery mechanism is just another aspect of effective mobile consumer reach.

At the Marketing Goes Mobile event hosted by the MIT Enterprise Forum in Boston earlier this week, several presenters focused on various different aspects of mobile advertising and reach.

Location counts. Victor Mulligan, CMO of mobile ad exchange Nexage, which handles 20 billion impressions a month, said they have seen a 33 percent growth in its marketplace. His key message: location-enabled impressions are where it’s at, and more premium publishers will be entering the market this year.

Apps reach matters. With well over a million mobile apps available, the increased reach of those apps can be critical, since many of them can be ad conduits. Jo Wightman, director of client development at Fiksu, a company that helps brands hit their mobile app marketing goals, recommended that marketers set aside 10 percent of their apps-related budgets for testing in search of the ideal rank. “Every app has a sweet spot,” she said. For example, Fiksu found through working on a cost-per-click and cost-per-inquiry method that certain aspects of Pandora’s effectiveness were higher in consumers 55 years and older. Wightman said that every app strategy should contain burst, the concept of driving large volumes of app downloads within a 24- to-48-hour period.

Impact varies by segment. Time and location play a role in effective reach, especially in the case of retailers. For example, during Black Friday, Staples ran one-hour flash sales with limited-quantity products along with multichannel deals. From 11 p.m. to 5 a.m., the retailer offered online-only deals and from 5 a.m. to noon, retail-only, according to Prat Vemana, director of mobile strategy and Velocity Lab at Staples. “Mobile is about the moment,” said Vemena. The ads of the moment were really special, time-based offers.

Whether real-time bidding is running complex algorithms or providing special offers based on a person’s location or time of day, marketers and mobile enabling companies are refining mobile targeting and it is getting better.

However, reaching the mobile consumer with an ad or feeling rewarded because they clicked on one is far from the end game. In many cases, it is just the beginning.



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