ADOTAS – While many industry insiders have declared that 2014 is the year when mobile advertising will finally realize its potential, some marketers remain hesitant to adopt the medium as a primary tool for driving consumer engagement.
Yet there’s reason to be optimistic about mobile’s future – a recent eMarketer report estimates that mobile ad spend will increase tenfold in the next three years to approximately $72.32 billion globally.
But in order to make these predictions a reality, marketers must reassess their mobile strategy at every level – from creative to targeting to attribution. Only then will we finally experience the long sought-after “Year of Mobile.”
The Right Creative
Since mobile advertising’s infancy, marketers have been taught that simply shrinking a 300×250 banner ad to fit the mobile/tablet form factor would yield significant result. They’re wrong.
What makes an ad compelling across any medium, including mobile, is creative that is tailored for each device. Simply repurposing content for a smaller screen will not suffice in an era when a consumer has less time than ever before for your brand message.
For instance, a rich media banner advertisement would certainly be appropriate for a company specializing in banking and finance. But for a car company or movie studio, whose ads rely more on visual storytelling, video serves as a more suitable venue to convey a brand message.
And of course, we cannot move on from this conversation without addressing native advertising. It’s proven to be extremely effective across the desktop and if Twitter’s purchase of MoPub in December of last year is any indication of where the industry is headed, native ads will dominate the mobile landscape this year.
While understanding the type of creative that resonates with a consumer is critical, it’s only just the beginning. One of the most important success factors for mobile lies in relevancy and targeting.
Consumers today are still subjected to far too many irrelevant advertisements across their mobile devices. According to a recent study by PricewaterhouseCoopers, 69% of consumers are willing to interact with a mobile ad, but only if it’s relevant and is delivered within the proper context. If the trend of irrelevant ads continues, marketers will find themselves in dangerous waters with the consumer.
Simply put, marketers must leverage data and insights across all channels to paint a clearer picture of the consumer and ultimately deliver more personalized messages. If they don’t, consumers will move on – and fast.
Attribution and Measurement
Marketers are hesitant to incorporate mobile into an overall strategy today because the medium is not yet driving significant conversions. While compelling, relevant creative is a step in the right direction, marketers still need a better sense of what it all means for their company’s bottom line.
It’s an issue that will remain top of mind throughout the year, but we’ll begin to see the solutions arrive that help marketers not only find the right customers but also meaningfully measure their impact across channels.
The Time to Move is Now
There are certainly a number of reasons to be excited about the future of mobile marketing, but we first must work to remove the stigma that is currently associated with the medium. For years, mobile ads have lacked the creativity and relevancy needed to position them as a cornerstone for any marketing effort – but that can change.
It will take a significant effort on the part of brands, agencies, and technology partners to change the perception of mobile ads to the point where they are widely accepted by marketers everywhere. But if they can successfully collaborate on ads that not only serve the right creative to the right consumer but can be measured in a meaningful way, there’s no limit to the value that they can deliver.