The unique attributes of mobile devices and mobile ad networks have made it difficult to trust the accuracy of campaign reports provided by mobile ad servers or the usage reports of mobile sites and applications. Crisp sometimes provides 3rd party reports to publishers or agencies that show significant discrepancies against the reports of other measurement servers. Regardless of which report is right or wrong, this issue has been a major barrier to effectively sell mobile media to advertisers.
The staff of the IAB and the MMA, together with the MRC and the GSMA and two dozen other mobile companies (including Crisp), have recently written the ‘Mobile Web Advertising Measurement Guidelines’. This document has now been released for public comment. This document provides some general guidelines as well as mobile specific guidelines. These 22 pages are a good step forward towards providing the different parties a way of determining the quality of their measurements.
In a white paper Crisp wrote last month, ‘Measurement on Mobile,’ we dug a little deeper into the different causes of the mobile measurement accuracy problems. Our white paper provides a history and overview of the mobile measurement methods, followed by a list of potential problems and ends with some basic recommendations.
The mobile ecosystem has witnessed extreme growth and continuing fragmentation, but methods are now available to extend the mature desktop ad serving infrastructure into mobile without introducing the many mobile measurement problems that were typical in the past. If you are involved in mobile advertising, I recommend reading both the IAB-MMA guidelines and the Crisp white paper (embedded below).
It is estimated that on average close to 4% of online page impressions for desktop formatted web pages is actually viewed on iPad, iPhone, Android-based and similar mobile devices. That portion of traffic is also quickly increasing.
However, the user experience on mobile devices and tablets is different, and as a result online ad campaigns displayed on those web pages get compromised. Sometimes the ads don't fit on the screen, or when users zoom and scroll to the content they are most interested in the ads either disappear or become pixilated. So what can be done to improve the value of this 'lost' inventory?
Another very important aspect to improve the effectiveness of campaigns viewed on mobile devices is the ad format itself. Advertisers should use alternative mobile ad formats that adapt to the zooming and scrolling behavior on touch-screen devices. Crisp Wireless invented the Adhesion ad format which stays on part of the screen at a pixel perfect resolution regardless all the zooming and scrolling. Crisp also focuses on providing an easy workflow to agencies and publishers to manage the design differences between mobile and desktop platforms while building rich media ad units and embedding video content.
When using Rich Media ad units from Crisp, all engagement metrics are available in one easy to understand report, which is properly calibrated to provide accurate stats from any mobile platform or desktop browser.
To conclude: It is possible to better leverage the mobile traffic to an online ad campaign when some fairly basic issues are addressed in the setup of the ad units. Our team at Crisp is addressing these issues in new and innovative ways. Contact them and they will tell you all about it.
The release of the iPad, the roll-out of 4G wireless networks with greater bandwidth, and the common availability of unlimited data plans are all driving the consumption and demand for mobile video. Overall, the number of mobile video users is predicted to increase to 95 million by 2015.
It is also becoming easier to produce and distribute mobile video. More mobile phones are in market that support video standards such as the H.264 codec, often represented via HTML5. This codec balances processor requirements, (battery life,) video quality and content size very well. HTTP Live Streaming technology now makes it easier to deliver dynamic pre/mid/post-roll advertising on Apple devices as well as video streaming via a basic web server infrastructure. The maturing technology increases available content, expands the audience for mobile video and makes it a more attractive mode of advertising. The advertiser can even reuse online video for mobile creative, driving down production costs.
However, mobile video has not become the norm just yet. Today nearly 50% of consumers are using mobile phones that do not support video. As smartphones continue to become the majority, this balance will shift.
As consumer’s demand for mobile video increases, Crisp Wireless advertisers have increased their interest in mobile video advertising. Advertisers are looking to use mobile video particularly with the iPad because of the uncompromising experience the device provides. Also, HTML5 allows for advertisers to embed the video window and provides APIs that give control and tracking capabilities surrounding activities around video play. This week, Apple announced the iPhone 4 with the new iOS 4. We expect this extremely high screen resolution (326 dpi) device to further improve advertiser demand for video.
Some best practices to consider if you are thinking mobile video advertising are as follows:
- Appropriately encode your video for the type of internet connection you will be utilizing
- Many mobile screens have a 1.5:1 aspect ratio, different from TV 4:3 or movie 16:9, so avoid pillarboxed and letterboxed viewing
- Leverage all of capabilities of the device you will be advertising on
- Avoid fast moving action, small text, and dark shots when creating a mobile video advertisement
In addition, some different formats to consider when designing a mobile video ad include:
- Click-to-video: Link from banner direct to video
- Ad with video: Video embedded in a full page ad, only as part of the creative
- Bumper: Very short video before or after other content
- Pre-roll: Typically about 15 seconds of video commercial before other video
- Mid-roll: Same during content
- Post-roll: Same after content
The outlook of mobile video advertising is filled with potential thanks to the iPad and similar devices allowing advertisers to embed videos and smartphones that support the tap-to-video format. As more and more smartphones support HTML5 video, costs will continue to deflate, eventually creating a CPM based model for mobile video ads. Premium content providers will continue selling sponsorship advertising for apps, encompassing mobile video ads.