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Blackberry Mobility Featured Article

May 14, 2010

The Big Mo is in Mobile Advertising

By Paula Bernier, Executive Editor, IP Communications Magazines

There's no question that mobile is hot. Throw advertising into the equation, and you can turn it up a notch to smokin'.

That's no surprise, as mobile phones are everywhere. And not only are they the third screen through which advertisers can convey their messages, mobile devices also have the unique feature of tagging along with consumers wherever they go, meaning advertisers potentially can reach these users wherever they are.

'I think mobile is a fantastic opportunity,' Nikesh Arora, Google (News - Alert) president of global sales, said at the International Advertising Association conference in Russia, according to a recent report. 'The advent of the iPhone (News - Alert), the Android devices and the Blackberry have finally given people reason in the western world (to) start using the mobile data. And as you see that go up, you begin to see the relevance of advertising in those applications.'

Google recently acquired AdMob , a mobile display ad technology provider, for $750 million in stock.

'Mobile advertising has enormous potential as a marketing medium and while this industry is still in the early stages of development, AdMob (News - Alert) has already made exceptional progress in a very short time,'  Susan Wojcicki, vice president of product management at Google, said in November when the deal was announced. 'AdMob is the quintessential Silicon Valley startup -- generating impressive year on year revenue growth -- and we're excited to welcome this talented team to Google.'

As discussed in the May issue of TMC's Next Generation Networks (NGN) magazine, Ken Lee, director of product marketing for the Oracle (News - Alert)Communications Service Delivery product family, says CMOs at service providers are interested not only in monetizing applications, but also in delivering advertising over mobile connections.

'Mobile marketing and advertising is expected to grow significantly in the next several years, and network operators need to stake their claim in this lucrative opportunity area,' says Shira Levine, directing analyst of next-gen OSS and policy at Infonetics Research (News - Alert).

To move on the mobile advertising opportunity, Lee says, service providers need advertising platforms that both map to their existing operational and billing support systems, and that enable them to expose various mobile advertising campaigns to potential advertisers. For example, to the latter point, Lee says, wireless network operators could build an inventory of contextual advertising campaigns - like a campaign related to a sports event and involving the delivery of coupons via SMS; or a program tied into a movie opening with specific mobile deliverables - and easily serve up this menu of options via a Web interface to potential advertisers like BMW and Starbucks.

While it will take some time for wireless operators to put these platforms in place, populate them with various mobile advertising campaigns and create the ecosystems that will enable them to expose these menus to potential advertisers, Lee indicates that the big service providers are in a pretty good position to put all this together given they themselves are important brands that know what big advertisers might be looking for.

Edited by Patrick Barnard

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