Mobile Advertising Effectiveness: Can Mobile Ads “Do it All?”
Mobile advertising is receiving an increasing amount of media attention and hype – and while we’re as enthusiastic as anyone about the opportunities of mobile advertising, it’s important for new mobile advertisers to be aware of the limitations of this medium as well.
If you’re going to invest in a mobile ad campaign, you need to keep in mind that mobile advertising, despite all its promise, cannot “do it all.” Here are a few pointers to guide your mobile advertising strategies:
- One thing at a time: Mobile ads are small, short-lived messages appearing on a small screen, often while the user is walking around, sitting in a public place, or distracted by noise. As such, your mobile ad has only a limited window of opportunity to get through to your audience. This means that your mobile ads need to focus on a single message. Don’t try to cram too much text or any complicated images into your in-app banner ads. Keep it simple. One message at a time.
- Focus on behavior: Mobile ads are great because they are highly trackable – you can see whether or not people are clicking on your ads and you can target your ads based on people’s location. As part of this trackability, you should make each mobile ad offer focus on one specific measurable behavior that you’re trying to get people to do. For example, when people click your mobile ad, they should be presented with a clear, specific actionable offer to download an app, sign up for a text-message list, join your e-mail list, or whatever it is that you want them specifically to do. Don’t send your audience to a generic landing page. Give them a clear next step.
- Test, test, test: One reason why mobile ads don’t have to “do it all” is because it’s easy to create multiple versions and test them to see which one works best. Unfortunately, one of the biggest mobile ad mistakes is that developers often don’t test their ads. Experiment with different offers, different creative designs, and different messages. See what works best. You might be surprised – the message your team thought was clever might turn out not to resonate with customers. Sometimes even a simple change in text, design or details of your offer can pay huge dividends.
- Focus on delivering value: As Lars Albright mentioned in a recent article, one of the best ways to supercharge your mobile advertising is to focus on adding value with every touch. The good news is that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to add value to your customers’ lives. Sometimes providing useful content such as a free report or informational video can be enough to start a relationship.
At the end of the day, it’s probably not fair for marketers to expect mobile ads to “do it all.” The right question is, “how can you make sure that your mobile ads are doing enough?” By taking a highly focused approach, with one specific behavior that you’re trying to impact, and by testing your ads to find the right combination of creative design and appealing message, you’ll find the right way to get big results from your small screen advertising.
What’s your take on this? How do you target your goals and measure results from your mobile ad campaigns? How do you decide “what we want to accomplish” with each mobile ad?