Since mobile has been catapulted into a huge market, brands and advertisers have realised the potential that mobile advertising can bring. From reaching people at their fingertips all over the globe, mobile advertising has begun to move away from annoying and intrusive forms of advertising such as pop-ups and banners and is now heading towards the likes of more engaging forms of advertising such as video and native advertising. We take a look at 10 of the most popular forms of mobile advertising, some good and some… not so good.
Mobile video is becoming huge. With more advanced phones and better connection speeds, video can now be watched on a mobile device with ease. Catching onto this, video is a great and more engaging way for brands to connect to consumers. In Q4 of 2013, 101 million people viewed video content on their mobile device, which was up from 80 million the year before. With video predicted to be the fastest growing advertising method this year and with mobile internet usage forever on the increase, brands who ignore mobile video as a means of advertising are making a huge mistake. With many formats available, from pre-roll to in-stream to video banner adverts, the potential that video has to reach and connect with users is massive.
2. Interactive Ads
Interactive mobile video ads are another branch of video advertising but can be said to add ‘another dimension to the advertising experience’. An interactive ad does what it says on the tin – the ad allows the user to interact with it, for example, playing a game or choosing an option the user wants to see. A recent report by IAB found that tablet users are twice as engaged with an ad if it has an interactive element and will also engage with the ad more positively. Interactive ads are great for giving the user a streamlined experience due to a lot of the information the brand wants to provide taking place within the ad, rather than the user being re-directed to another page.
3. QR Codes
QR codes. Those strange looking black and white pixelated boxes that can be found when flicking through a magazine, on food packaging or, more randomly, clothing! Known fully as a Quick Response Code, it does just that by allowing people to quickly scan the code with any mobile device that has a camera and is internet-enabled. Once scanned (after trying your utmost to align the code with your camera phone) you could be redirected to anything, from a URL to a coupon or even a game. When they first appeared, QR codes were a novelty. However, they have not proved to be very successful, with a study conducted on college students revealing that 78.5% did not even know how to scan one. It’s fair to say that the novelty has worn off. Admit it, when have you actually successfully used a QR code?
4. Banner Ads
Once upon a time, banner ads were a great way to reach consumers on the desktop. On mobile, banners are still a method used by brands, but they can be argued to be a less creative means due to the other formats now available. But banner ads aren’t all bad. They are an inexpensive ad option which allows for great reach and they also support a range of targeting options. So if you’re looking for a cost-effective way to reach a large number of consumers, then banner ads are a viable option.
5. Native Ads
Native advertising is a relatively new advertising format. The definition of a native ad is ‘where the ad experience follows the natural form and function of the user experience where it is placed’. Basically, the user will not feel that they are actually looking at or watching an advert. For example, native advertising may appear as a long-form video, a video stream or simply a ‘sponsored by’ post on social media. Social news site BuzzFeed shows some great examples of native advertising, with many of the stories and posts on their site actually being an ad for some of the top brands. Native advertising is therefore adjusted to its surroundings, allowing consumers to experience the advertisement seamlessly.
6. In-App Ads
In-app advertising is becoming a huge revenue source for advertisers and app developers in recent years. With the user already engaging with the app, the advert being shown whilst the user is using the app is obviously going to gain high engagement. What’s more, advertisers and brands can target a specific audience, due to a certain demographic of person playing or engaging with a particular app. With mobile in-app ads growing about 60% year on year, they’re definitely an effective means of mobile advertising.
7. Pop-Up and Takeover Ads
Probably everyone’s advertising nightmare. The annoying, inconsiderate pop-up advert. Luckily, many advertisers realise that pop-up ads are just that. However, the pop-up ad does still appear at times, reminding us that there are just some advertisers out there with the unintentional aim of annoying their potential customers. On mobile, new formats reminiscent of the pop-up ad are making an appearance, such as the interstitial, which is a dedicated page that the user must click past to get to the actual page they wanted. Forbes’ mobile site is a perfect example of this. This type of advertising tends to disappoint the user and come across too intrusive.
8. Location Based Advertising
With more and more people turning to their smartphone devices for everyday help with things such as finding the nearest restaurant or shop or getting directions to their destination, there has emerged a new market for advertising. Location based advertising has been developed fairly recently and takes advantage of a person’s location based on where they have recently got directions to or checked in to. Seems like very clever advertising, no? 72% of consumers state that they would respond to a call to action in advertising messages when they are in the vicinity of the brand or retailer.
9. Lock-Screen Ads
Seems like an advertisers dream, a consumer seeing an advert every time they unlock their phone, which for the majority of smartphone users out there, this is a lot! Who wants to see an advert every time they unlock their phone? Well, apps such as Locket and Slidejoy will you pay you for this inconvenience which doesn’t sound so bad. However, don’t expect to earn much, with some apps paying as little as 3 cents an hour, no matter how many times you unlock your phone.
10. Notification Ads
The majority of people who have downloaded a company’s or brand’s app will obviously be interested in that brand and chances are, they are probably their best customers. Notification ads or push notifications are therefore a great way to maintain and strengthen customer relationships. It can’t be argued that notification advertising is a great way to connect and prompt consumers at the right time regarding the right piece of information.
There you have it. Our summary of the most popular forms of mobile advertising. If there are any types of advertising that you feel should be added to this list, then please let us know by commenting below.