Mobile Advertising is Going Global. Here’s How You Can Benefit…
Mobile advertising is a fast growing trend worldwide, but, the opportunities for marketers and app developers are not always the same in every country. For starters, the wealthiest countries are not always the earliest adopters of mobile advertising, and will not always be the biggest markets for mobile ads.
For example, by 2015, 80% of global mobile advertising spending will take place outside the U.S. as advertisers try to reach consumers in emerging markets, many of whom use mobile devices as their primary form of communication. Beyond the demographic and economic forces at work that make mobile advertising such a global phenomenon, there are cultural differences that influence countries’ expectations for mobile advertising.
Here are a few key trends and insights on global mobile advertising, with advice on how your business can get the most out of your mobile advertising spending:
- Asia is a leading force in mobile advertising: According to research from Gartner, during 2011, Asia accounted for almost half (49%) of global spending on mobile ads, and most of that amount was represented by South Korea and Japan. Both of these countries have been relatively early adopters of mobile devices and mobile advertising and the market penetration for mobile broadband devices is the highest in the world. For example, 91% of South Koreans have mobile broadband subscriptions, making South Korea #1 in the world in mobile broadband penetration. Compared to some of these other countries, the U.S. and Western Europe are still catching up in their usage of mobile devices.
- Speak the language of your audience: Many companies run mobile ads in English in every country, without paying attention to whether or not English is widely spoken (or read) in those countries. If your ads aren’t legible to the people who are seeing them, you’re wasting money. And, with so many translation services available, making sure that your ads are relevant in every country has never been easier, or cheaper. Also give some thought to culturally sensitive design. Certain color combinations are more likely to be effective (or even offensive) in different countries and different cultural contexts.
- Go local: With location-based mobile advertising, it’s more possible than ever before to reach your audience exactly at the point of purchase, putting a message or a discount or an offer in front of them right when they are deciding whether to buy. This is especially important for international markets, where products must be carefully paired with the needs of local audiences.
- Target your approach: There is a vast universe of possibilities for how your company can use mobile advertising to reach customers – pay-per-click, banner ads, in-app advertising, cost per impression and many combinations of content and delivery methods. Instead of taking a scattershot method, spending money all over the place and hoping that something works, you should instead think strategically about where to devote your mobile advertising spending – whether it’s specific countries, specific categories or even specific geographic areas within one country. If you are an app developer, think hard about what kind of value your app delivers, and target your mobile advertising to the people who are most likely to be interested in what you offer. You don’t have to win everywhere to succeed. Instead, pick the countries where you have the ability to win and go big there. This is especially true for app developers who are trying to get into the top 25 apps in a particular category of an app store in order to make significant money.
The global rise of mobile advertising offers exciting opportunities to app developers and advertisers – but don’t get overwhelmed. Instead, look for ways to target your approach, think strategically, and put your message in front of the right audience for what you have to offer, regardless of whether they’re in your neighborhood or on the other side of the world.
What’s your take on this? What other trends are you seeing in the global mobile advertising market? What best practices can you recommend to companies who are considering taking their mobile advertising to international markets?