How Consumers Are Driving a New Acceptance of Mobile Advertising

Anyone who has been working in mobile advertising for any significant amount of time could easily count enough ‘revolutions,’ ‘Year(s) of Mobile,’ or 2.0 moments to need both hands. For the most part, these innovations and moments have resulted in stunning capabilities but very little ROI growth. This is because the true holy grail for advertisers isn’t a shiny new toy, but true engagement on the consumer’s side. As any CTO can tell you, this isn’t something we can simply invent.

Luckily, some dynamic new trends highlighted by recent studies suggest that a wide variety of factors has contributed to an upward trend in mobile engagement. Interestingly, this trend is being driven by shifting attitudes of consumers and not by a single new piece of technology. On Device Research recently published a study showing 70% of users consider mobile ads on smart phones as a personal invitation rather than an intrusion. In addition, the study shows that users want these ads to help them explore products they’re interested in and subsequently enable them to make a purchase decision then and there.

As a study, the piece stops before making conclusions about what has been driving this. Since this is a blog post, we don’t have to. Below are the three main factors that we believe are driving this new age of mobile engagement by the consumer:

Channel ownership – As any smart and experienced marketer will tell you, most types of traditional mobile marketing, including SMS and email (which is mobile, believe it), have not historically been effective in ‘customer acquisition.’ Rather, they are only ‘customer development’ tools that require the marketer to have an existing relationship with the recipient in order for the campaign to be effective at driving action. Why, then, have mobile ads become one of the most effective ‘customer acquisition’ tools available today, proving that they have the ability to initiate the relationship as well as develop it further? The difference is that the thing that stops a person from responding to an unsolicited text message is not a lack of trust in the message, but a lack of trust that it can be turned off. Both mobile numbers and email addresses are direct connections with advertisers so there is no guarantee that best practices for opting out will be followed. Display ads, push notification ads, and icon ads connect viaapps or ad networks to deliver the messages and can easily be turned off or opted out, enabling the recipient to ‘own’ the delivery channel. Continued reinforcement and acceptance of this principle is changing public perceptions as a result.

‘Explorability’ – The obvious growth in capabilities in mobile devices has increased the reward, and simultaneously increased the risk, specifically in the minds of ad recipients. The study shows a clear desire by recipients to engage in a more meaningful way with advertisers by exploring their full offerings via their mobile devices.

Mobile commerce – This one is obvious to anyone watching the mobile industry, or nearly any industry for that matter. Mobile commerce via apps and mobile landing pages has exploded in recent years and is continuing to grow at an extraordinary pace. This has reinforced the reward in the risk vs. reward formula and turned the tide even further.

Read the full study by On Device Research HERE.

This article was first published by Airpush and is reprinted with their permission.