Careers in mobile ad sales and other mobile-related fields are in high demand. Mobile advertising could the hottest thing since the Motorola Razr craze, but for some it’s still on the fence whether or not the dollars are going to catch up with expectations for the relatively young advertising channel. Many reports have estimated the use of mobile internet to some 200 million users, nearly triple that of 2010. But how are the ads measuring up?
According to some, mobile advertising is a buzz word being thrown around, but not really understood. One reason for this, according to a recent article from iMedia Connection, is that mobile phones are too anonymous making it nearly impossible for publishers to put the right value on their inventory. Mobile inventories are being shifted around with no direction, because marketers aren’t able to truly know the consumers their ads are reaching. Instead of being ads that offer utility to the end-user, ads are being served up to any number of consumers with any number of interests or disinterests.
But other statistics lead us to believe that the future is bright and the challenges facing mobile advertising will be overcome. The worldwide mobile advertising market will exceed $5 billion this year according to Smaato, $2 billion of which will be in the US (see this and other trends: 5 Big Trends You Need to Know!).
So to be smart about your mobile strategy, know your customer before spending your dollars. You might ask, how do marketers understand their target consumer given the anonymity of many mobile phones? An example can be seen by an initiative put together by Charmin called “Sit or Squat app by Charmin”. The app gave NYC based users the ability to search for public bathrooms and rate those public bathrooms (good rating was sit, and a bad rating was squat). Very clever, and what did this do? For Charmin it gives them ability to not only track their users more accurately, but it also gives them more insight into their needs depending on how they rate the room.
While there might not be enough information available to make this channel as sophisticated as we’d like it to be, we cannot deny the trajectory of the platform. I feel that it is better to be in the eye of the public, even if some of those eyes are not asrelevant as I’d like – akin to the beginnings of social media. To be as effective as possible, keep these concepts in mind when approaching mobile:
- Understand which audience segments to target.
- Know that there are limited insights and measurement capabilities available.
- Remember that it’s difficult to prove ROI from mobile.
- There is a lack of clarity on how to make mobile an integral part of the marketing mix.
- Deliver relevant mobile ads to target segments.
- You need to gather behavioral insights.
- You must have relevant and engaging content.
- You must deliver the right message, to the right audience, through the right channels.
- Understand that there is a lack of cookie technology for mobile.
- Drive response through easy mobile payment.
- The consumer experience must be easy.
- Be aware that consumers may be reluctant, unaware, or unable to transact on mobile.