By Invitation

How technology can cater to advertisers’ needs for transparent and efficient mobile ad campaigns

  • Imagine you’ve just placed an advert into a newspaper for your business. Do you know how many people are going to see that advert when it runs? And are you even sure that anyone who sees it bothers purchasing your product or services?
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  • The simple answer to all of those questions is no. Though we know that advertising offline works to some extent by raising brand
  • Imagine you’ve just placed an advert into a newspaper for your business. Do you know how many people are going to see that advert when it runs? And are you even sure that anyone who sees it bothers purchasing your product or services?
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  • The simple answer to all of those questions is no. Though we know that advertising offline works to some extent by raising brand awareness, measuring its tangible impact is incredibly difficult to do.
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  • As a result, marketers are increasingly on the lookout for technology-driven advertising solutions to help them accurately quantify, assess and iterate on their advertising campaigns.
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  • One of the most obvious ways this is manifesting itself is in rising mobile advertising spend. According to PwC, digital advertising spend in the US is expected to hit $38.6bn by 2019. Advertising spend offline, on the other hand, is only set to increase in value slightly (such as magazine advertising spend increasing by $200m to $17bn) or decrease (such as newspaper advertising which is forecast to fall by 33%).
  • The simple reason behind this shift is that the infrastructure that supports digital advertising, and mobile adverts in particular,bolsters transparency by encouraging marketers to track, measure and iterate within each of their campaigns.
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  • Social platforms such as Facebook, which generated $4.5bn in revenue in Q3 2015 from mobile advertising, allows marketers to target users on everything from age to gender through to precise interests. Marketers can also track whether someone within that group interacts with a selection of pre-created adverts and use analytics solutions, such as Yahoo-owned Flurry, to measure how that person behaves within an app.
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  • This has a number of highly positive impacts for marketers. One measurable advantage of this approach is that it helps marketers tangibly measure the performance of their campaigns. If the users advertised to download an app, marketers will soon discover whether they deliver enough value to be targeted again or if the cohort (or platform used to reach them) isn’t up to scratch.
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  • Furthermore, advances in the tech that drives the purchasing of mobile advertising allows a small marketing team to reach thousands, perhaps millions, of users around the world with a single campaign.
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  • Real-time bidding platforms allow marketers to compete for a single ad impression and display a relevant advert to a single user at a time, but reaching millions of valuable users in the process. They do so via a campaign dashboard, which is simple enough to allow a single person or a small team to upload, monitor the performance and adjust spend towards the more effective advertising creative as soon as a campaign goes live.
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  • The result of these improvements, and the transparency it delivers, ultimately produces a positive effect for both marketers and platforms. The increase in tracking has led to a corresponding emergence of new ways to buy traffic, such as an advertiser only spending when a user installs an app or completes an action: driving consistent innovation and improved performance in the sector.
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  • Even more importantly, best practices within mobile advertising are beginning to slip into offline media and improve its performance further. Game of War’s television adverts conclude with a search bar featuring the phrase “game of war”, encouraging users to type the term after the ad completes and allowing Machine Zone to measure campaign impact.
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  • Meanwhile, the likes of Shazam, an app that allows users to identify what music is playing, is being used by advertisers such as Jaguar to find out whether users are listening to their offering (as well as directing anyone who does tag the song to Jaguar marketing materials).
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  • Finally, new device categories will likely improve advertising relevancy in the real world even further. Smart watches, such as the Apple Watch, and the emergence of smart appliances as part of the Internet of Things will help marketers use location data and real world measures to bolster campaigns. Running a gym? Why not send an advert to users with a high blood pressure near your location. And if you’re in charge of a supermarket and the user’s fridge is low on supplies, a simple push notification when they get close to your store could increase commerce.
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  • Technology, therefore, is helping to clear up the muddy marketing and advertising waters in a way that benefits businesses. By demystifying what happens after an advert is shown and helping marketers to confidently measure performance, opaque practices encouraged in the offline industry are already under sustained and serious threat.
  • In the summer of 2015, the US ad industry was shaken by a major scandal called Mediapalooza. The revelation that major agencies were receiving kickbacks from television companies, irrespective of whether the channel offered value to the client, sparked a review of $8.3bn worth of media buys from companies including Coca Cola, Visa, BMW and L’Oreal.
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  • That, ultimately, is the best reason for explaining why technology is transforming the way marketers advertise. Removing opacity and uncertainty in favour of clarity, technology isn’t just clarifying mobile marketing performance for advertisers; it is clearing up the advertising sector as a whole and improving its performance offline as well.

 

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