According to industry analysts, more people around the globe access the internet via their mobile phones than on PCs. That fact clearly is behind the rapid move of the multi-billion dollar web advertising market towards the mobile space. Leading brands already recognize the potential of mobile advertising because it delivers more targeted results than traditional web advertising. Mobile ads, for example, can target users in certain countries and on specific networks, or be tailored to particular handset makes and types. As mobile advertising gains steam, it becomes critical to closely examine the differences between mobile and web advertising-- and the key advantages that the nascent mobile ad industry offers. Below is a checklist of items to consider:
Mobile ads physically can't emulate their bigger web cousins due to restricted screen real estate.
There'll be banner ads but much smaller than on the web. There'll also be text ads but they'll likely be squeezed into the body of a page that's highly relevant. Expect creative directors to explore new ways to get the message across-- just as they did when web advertising was in its infancy. In the mobile arena, you might see voice ads stream while you're browsing a WAP site or ads being delivered while interstitial pages are waiting to be downloaded.
Mobile ads can deliver highly targeted results.
This will help advertisers easily determine their return on investment. Bango, for example, can provide a global identity for each mobile phone user. This identity means users can be tracked as they click through from an ad to a site and then onto buying. The "digital fingerprint" is unique to each user (much like a human fingerprint). An important aspect of the fingerprint, however, is that it doesn't reveal details such as a phone number. This is an important point-- as the advertising industry can do without a system that could be abused by SPAMMERS.
Mobile marketing campaigns can be fine tuned.
Imagine having valuable information, such as the consumer's country and network. That knowledge can help fine tune marketing campaigns enabling them to effectively target a particular region and track local success. Advertisements also could be targeted to a user's handset make and capability. So, if you sell games for a particular device type, only people with compatible handsets will see your ads.
Mobile advertising can eliminate costly and confusing wastage.
A clear identification for each customer that clicked through to the mobile site or service allows you to determine who is new and who is a repeat customer. You can understand which customers then go on to purchase, either immediately or on a repeat visit in the future. Ultimately you get to understand the total value each customer brings over time as a result of the advertising campaign.
Advertising on the mobile internet is far less susceptible to the perils of click fraud.
Click fraud is a problem that has been visibly plaguing traditional web advertising for many years. In the mobile space, advertisers can clearly identify a unique user, verified against a phone number or operator tag. We can verify that the WAP gateway is legitimate and recognized as being owned by a known operator, and by monitoring the history of clicks associated with a particular service, we can identify and track unexpected trends. Reducing the incidences of click fraud mean pricing and results are much more controllable.
In summary, mobile advertising has the potential to deliver more effective targeting with fewer risks than web advertising.
Sarah Keefe is VP marketing at Bango. .