Ingenuity and creativity: The next frontiers of mobile advertising

Mobile advertising is about to overtake desktop advertising in 2016 according to a new report from Marin Software. That means mobile advertising will generate over US$100 billion dollars.

Its market share will rise to 12% from only 2% just three years ago, according to eMarketer. The benchmark report, “Mobile Advertising Around the Globe: 2015 Annual Report,” includes statistics and trends uncovered through an examination of the Marin Global Online Advertising Index. The index consists of advertising data from leading global brands that manage more than US$7 billion in annualised ad spend through Marin’s platform.

The dataset represents all major industry sectors, and 13 countries and regions, including the US, UK, Eurozone, Japan, and China.

This is being primarily driven by smartphones: Apple, Samsung and the many cheaper and therefore accessible Chinese smartphones are enabling all consumers to own one. With smartphones come higher quality screens, and more ways for advertisers to creatively engage their target consumers.

By 2020, it’s estimated that four out of five adults will own a smartphone across the world. This will dramatically increase mobile advertising opportunities, and therefore revenues, even further.

As brands and app developers look for ever more innovative ways to engage mobile consumers- greater use of video, more creative advertising formats, ever more available apps produced cheaply and quickly by young entrepreneurs, and the rise of 3G and 4G will enhance mobile advertising experiences. Speed will keep on increasing, advertising formats will keep getting more sophisticated, and in turn consumers ever more demanding.

Advertisers need to rise to the challenge to capitalise on targeting the billions of existing and new mobile users through ingenuity and creativity. Programmatic advertising alone will not achieve these objectives, but combined with greater creativity in both execution and formats it will.

Mobile gives advertisers the greatest amount of data possible to improve targeting. Location data enables brands to pinpoint who they wish to target more accurately when combined with all the other data points that mobiles give them.

Many retailers are even using beacons in stores to accurately target buyers with specific offers from specific brands via Bluetooth even down to a specific aisle. This enables mobile advertising channels to offer brands unprecedented agility and accuracy unlike any other medium.

(Read also: How EpiCentre used iBeacon to integrate online and offline)

While there is great excitement and hype about the Apple Watch it is unlikely we will see display advertising appear there,  given the size of the screen. However, what will be very interesting is the data that can be gathered from the wearables’ apps and usage of the device – many people don’t take their smartphone into the gym, or on a run, but their smartwatch will be there, recording their activity and providing a deeper insight into the consumer using this device.

This data can then be used to build up more detailed picture of the consumer and enrol them into relevant audiences for targeting at a later date, on a different device.

The rise of the machines has only just started.

The writer is Robert Woolfrey (pictured), managing director Asia Pacific at Millennial Media.


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