App-vertising Smartly

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The use of mobiles has changed the way advertisers woo consumers. As they zoom in on smartphone and iPhone users, it’s predicted that this business will reach $49.81 billion in two years

By MR Dua


ADVERTISE or perish. That is the mantra of today’s marketing punditry. Moreover, since time immemorial, advertising has been universally accepted as the most essential ingredient of any successful marketing endeavor. Therefore, any advertising media, be it print, electronic, outdoor or face-to-face, is the best tool for multiplying sales and increasing profits.

While most entrepreneurs and industries yoke existing advertising media with their publicity plans as and when they deem fit, of late, manufacturers and marketers have realized that all these devices take some time to reach the target audience. By the time it reaches the user, they have ended up losing him, sometimes forever. This is something no business enterprise wants in today’s cut-throat world.

NEW AD SLOTS
Therefore, in order to approach the targeted consumer expeditiously and attract his attention instantly, numerous mobile mediums such as smartphones, iPhones and tablets have opened up umpteen new ad slots. Studies in mobile media advertising have demonstrated the magnetic pulling power of these mediums to getting the consumer to buy the products. No wonder advertisers are rushing in to employ these new advertising techniques.

Also, with a massive target audience, this form of advertising works best. It’s estimated that cell phone users have touched 935 million in India alone, while in Asia, there are over seven lakh apps. Some of the internationally reputed mobile phone advertising agencies are Adform, AdMob, AppBoost, Geemobi, Mobvista, mobileCore, AdMaxim and AdlQuity.

eMarketer, a noted American media researcher, estimated that until December last year, more than $30 billion was spent on new mobile advertising globally. And it is predicted to expand further, reaching $49.81 billion in the next two years. In the US alone, it is likely to net more than $4.4 billion by 2018.
With the meteoric growth of mobile phone usage, and apps such as Pandora, Shazam, Angry Birds and web mapping service MapQuest owned by AOL, marketers consider them to be the most profound, cheapest and quickest devices for accessing consumers everywhere, be it villages, small towns or metros.

VERY COST-EFFECTIVE
Yet another innovative aspect of mobile media such as smartphones and iPads is that they can be easily and quickly integrated with other similar technologies such as the internet and tablets, thus making mobile advertising very cost-effective even for small businesses and petty traders.
For the consumer too, it is a winning proposition. Mobile media advertising gives him immediate information regarding a product and chances of it being bought increase exponentially. Also, with smartphone and iPhone users invariably carrying their devises in pockets or bags, their access is fast.

Professionally speaking, the mobile media ad copy is brief, precise, to the point. It does not have any unnecessary adverbs or bombastic language. At the same time, it has to be engaging, catchy, funny and with mass appeal. Such advertising carries the image of the product and has sugar-coated copy to persuade the user to buy the product. Most often, the screen just shows the product, while empty space could be used to lure the user with discounts in phone tariffs, call costs, etc. Most iPhone and smartphone users could enormously benefit by such concessions and deals struck instantaneously.

While the ad content and duration of advertising in mobile devices may vary with costs and transmission plans, messages are put out in these formats: SMS advertising, MMS, mobile PPC (pay per click ads, also called InPage advertising), mobile banners, contextual mobile ads, idle screen advertising and audio advertising.

Also, commonly aired ads include: mobile phone audios, internet videos, cartoons and engaging conversations with consumers. The advantage with mobile advertising is that it can provide product information such as location, users, time and tasks, allowing marketers to identify and influence customers at the right moment of decision.

In addition, cell technologies and apps are being effortlessly “married” with several other technologies. “App-vertising” is the most recent innovation. It’s not surprising that Apple’s App Store is fast entering the market for cell phone advertising. For its new sports car, the A4, luxury car-maker Audi has created the “A4 Driving Challenge Application”, says The Wall Street Journal.

PROBLEM AREAS
Despite the growing importance of mobile advertising, many hurdles remain in the actual usage of these adverts. Some of the most frequently experienced are created by web detectors, Ad Blockers. In addition, there is skewed mobile screen space—fitting the matter and illustrations, monotonous content, users deleting messages, exaggerated messages unaccompanied by actual delivery of products. There are also numerous risks such as malware, privacy intrusions and spam profusions. However, several startups are providing relevant software and solutions to battle such defects.

With media consumption habits constantly evolving, it is being seen that print media is losing clientele and television viewers are fickle. In this context, mobile advertising will most certainly gain new ground in all areas of marketing and advertising strategies.

And in India, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Digital India taking off soon, mobile advertising is bound to make waves in rural and urban areas in times to come.