How to stop your mobile advertising from being ignored

laptop mobile tabletIf you ask the average person walking down the street what mobile advertising is, you’re likely to hear the response “spam”.

Of course, we are not talking about the canned precooked meat product that was popular in the 1940’s, but rather mobile spamming. Irrelevant or unsolicited messages sent over the internet, typically to large numbers of users, for the purposes of advertising, phishing, or spreading malware. So how can you avoid your mobile adverts from being ignored?

The first step is to identify your specific audience. Next you can begin to provide them with messages that are relevant to their context and preferences. Unfortunately, too many choose to go down the route of bombarding all users with low quality, irrelevant ads, which can switch users off to the mobile advertising experience.

One of the key challenges the industry is facing is the potential impact on brand safety. Placing a brand in the wrong context is not only bad for the target audience, but could also jeopardises the brand image. Education around ad placement is an important and ongoing need, advertisements that are intrusive or disturb users are seldom, if ever, successful. The key is to target users at a time when they are not already actively engaged, such as when an application is loading. Suitable placement is in understanding the behavioural patterns of users, and how they specifically use their mobiles. Knowing when and where to communicate via mobile advertising can be the difference between success and failure.

The content of the messaging should not be underestimated when it comes to engaging an audience. Remember that taking an existing ad from one platform and simply resizing it to fit a mobile device is rarely a profitable approach. Far too often, adverts that appear on your smartphone were never actually designed for a mobile device.

The platform on which the advert is displayed is just as important as the advert itself. Advertisers must take this into consideration to achieve memorable engagement that grabs the end user.  They must recognise the benefits of mobile advertising and aim to utilise them fully. This is a new dawn of advertising. Let’s be honest, too often, ads are boring, standardised and generic. By offering fun, engaging and compelling rich media content, it’s far more likely to provide an experience that will be memorable, instead of a one-off generic message that is likely to be ignored.

In a world of new and innovative mobile technology, users expect advertisements to keep pace with the rate of technological change and utilise innovative, interactive and creative means to engage them.

In 2010, Steve Jobs said “mobile ads suck”. Four years on and the industry is finally waking up to the reality of the power of mobile advertising. The mobile world has changed, with global advertising expenditure earmarked at US$41.9 bn by 2017, and the UK the mobile value expected to reach close to £1 billion this year.

By using applications, videos and even gaming, mobile advertisers are finding that they are able to become far more effective, and help their target audience to become more engaged in the process. We can rest assured, that mobile ads no longer “suck”.

Joy Dean is head of partnerships at Widespace