Thursday, October 16, 2008

How is Mobile Advertising Different?

Here is an article on "Next Generation Advertising" by Mike Manzo of Opennet. I was pleasantly surprised to find it echoing some of the thoughts which the Mobile Advertising product that I have been working on is based.

Most of the Mobile Advertising solutions in the market today are trying to replicate the internet advertising model on the Mobile. However, such products fail to capitalize on the unique opportunities that a mobile device offers.

A mobile device is a personal device, unlike the desktop where I have one for office work, couple of them for home use that I share with my wife and parents and yet another one for gaming that I share with my brother. A mobile device however remains a very personal device and is always with the owner. Here are few possibilities:
  • A mobile device is not entirely anonymous. My preferences and responses to Ads can be tracked.
  • A mobile service provider has my demographic profile.
  • My current location is known in the network.
  • I subscribe to a host of value added services, most of them have to be billed through my service provider. That reflects my needs and interests.
    • I download and store music on my phone which reflects my interests.
    • With mobile commerce, when I make payments over the phone, the payment system knows the products or services that I am paying for.
  • I make calls to several people and if their profiles are known, then the service provider has information of my regular circle of connections. If I am looking for some services, for example, if I am looking to buy a car and I have been making calls to a few car dealers recently then it is possible to figure out, for an intelligent system, a change in my call patterns, and hence my recent need.
With the right intelligent solution all these information are richer than anything the internet world has seen till now. Mobile advertising will work only when it is targeted and useful, like any other advertising medium. Mindless blasting of ads to users will only create a new market for innovative mobile Ad blockers!

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