RSS FeedArchive for the ‘Mobile’ Category

In Mobile, Direct Sales Wins Out Against The Open Exchange

jennifer wiseDespite a surge in programmatic buying for mobile ads, a recent Forrester report cautions that challenges unique to mobile advertising make direct sales away from open marketplaces the preferred buying method for the foreseeable future.

Based on interviews with 21 industry executives, mobile marketing analyst Jennifer Wise wrote in her report – “Mobile Advertising: It’s Time to Get Personal” – that mobile campaigns require much more customization than desktop ads, and therefore direct sales are optimal.

Can one look at the evolution of programmatic buying for fixed Internet as a model for mobile? Wise said no. “(Programmatic for mobile) is not going to follow the same trajectory as desktop,” Wise told AdExchanger. “Mobile has many different environments. ... It’s much harder to identify the user than what we had with desktop.” (more…)

Mobclix Returns As Axonix

AxonixMobclix, the mobile ad exchange that was acquired and subsequently sold by the troubled mobile marketing agency Velti, re-emerged Tuesday as Axonix.

GSO Capital Partners, a division of Blackstone, bought Velti’s US, British and Indian mobile marketing divisions (including Mobclix) in November last year.

Axonix will officially launch next month in a partnership with Telefonica, which is sharing joint ownership of the new company with GSO. Simon Birkenhead, Telefonica’s former director of global advertising sales, is Axonix’s CEO and Simon Bailey, former VP of global demand at Mobclix, is its CCO.

Bailey is the only Mobclix employee that has joined Axonix so far. Given that other Mobclix engineers have been hired by other companies, Birkenhead said he is looking for “local talent” in London. At its height, Mobclix had tens of thousands of publishers on its network, noted Birkenhead, who is busy courting publishers and advertisers for the new company.


TreSensa CEO Bets On Games Built For The Mobile Web

Rob-GrossbergWho will win the mobile race – native or Web apps?

Mobile game publisher and distributor TreSensa is betting on the latter. The New York City-based startup, which is behind games like Mad Cab and Scooby-Doo and the Race to WrestleMania, raised $2 million last month, bringing its funding total to $3.5 million. Its clients include HBO, World Wrestling Entertainment and Progressive Insurance. AdExchanger spoke with CEO Rob Grossberg.

AdExchanger: What problem does TreSensa solve?

ROB GROSSBERG: It’s very challenging today for developers if they don’t have a big marketing budget to get their games played within the existing app stores. If you’re not on those lists, you’re not going to get easily found. And so, developers are forced to use cost-per-install models. The average cost per install is about $3 and it puts a lot of pressure on developers to drive revenue.

Typically games make about a $1.50 per month. If you have to pay $3 to get the user, you have to get that user to constantly use your game to recoup your money. That model was broken and we saw an opportunity for solutions that allow game discovery and monetization in addition to the app stores.

We built technology to support mobile Web gaming and a distribution platform to take a mobile Web game and get it across channels so game developers can get plays without relying on cost per downloads and pushing people to the app stores.

Can you give me a use case?

We did a game last spring with HBO. It was to promote the sixth season of True Blood and they wanted to prep their user base. So they asked us to create a mobile Web game that they promoted to their Facebook followers. WWE is another partner that asked us to help them develop and launch a game. We made a  Scooby-Doo WrestleMania game in conjunction with Warner Brothers. (more…)

Apple Throws A Bone To App Marketers, Blesses IDFA For Attribution

IDFAApple has given its tacit approval for the use of its Identifier for Advertising (IDFA) to attribute app installs and post-install actions. The development, welcomed by app marketers and their ad partners, comes two months after Apple spread fear in the app ecosystem by rejecting some apps that didn't adhere to a narrow ad serving use case.

New language in the iTunes Connect portal for developers spells out three scenarios for the acceptable use of IDFA. Those scenarios are (a) Using IDFA to serve advertisements within an app, (b) using IDFA to attribute installs to a previously served ad, and (c) using IDFA to attribute a post-install action such as X number of launches, a subscription, or an in-app purchase.

The below screen grab shows the page in question, which appears when an app developers submit an app for inclusion in the iTunes App Store (Click to enlarge).


TapSense Goes After Publishers With $10M 'RTB Fund'

Ash-KumarDespite the growth of mobile real-time bidding (RTB) platforms, some publishers remain skeptical about the benefits of this technology, as they are fearful of cannibalizing inventory and driving down auction rates.

The mobile ad platform TapSense, which offers a private mobile RTB marketplace, is tackling this challenge by making a deal with publishers.

“We want to make it easier for app developers to use our RTB platform by removing the risks,” said TapSense CEO and co-founder Ash Kumar. TapSense is calling its offer the $10 Million RTB Fund and became available Wednesday until the end of the year or until customers reach the $10 million cap.

RTB solutions, Kumar argued, provide a more efficient way to sell inventory to advertisers, and publishers can maintain control over their inventory by setting floor CPMs and using tools like whitelists and blacklists.


For Facebook, Measuring Across Devices And Apps Is A Huge Focus

facebookFacebook is increasingly focused on connecting audiences across screens and channels, and helping clients measure those results.

Graham Mudd, the company's director of advertising measurement for North America, described aspects of the company's approach to AdExchanger at the IAB’s Mobile Marketplace conference.

“We believe the future of marketing is being able to find specific consumers based on what the publisher, advertiser or intermediary knows about the consumers,” Mudd said. “And [to do that] we need to move beyond panels and cookies to census-based measurements.”

Instead of relying on consumer panels, which Mudd said fail to provide the necessary scale to measure diverse audiences across channels, Facebook is focusing on a combination of CRM data and third-party data from companies like Datalogix, Acxiom and Epsilon to help clients enhance their measurement capabilities.

Mudd also confirmed that the new “people-based measurement capability” that Facebook ads product VP Brian Boland alluded to in an AdAge op-ed will include partnerships with other data providers, although he declined to name the providers.

Facebook uses Nielsen’s Online Campaign Ratings (OCR) and Datalogix to measure the effectiveness of ads on both Facebook and Instagram, even though the latter is positioned as a separate brand and service. The company does not however, target users with ads based on data collected from both Instagram and Facebook. (more…)

Catching RTB Fever: AppFlood And Vserv.Mobi Unveil RTB Ad Exchanges

RTB-AsiaLike their US counterparts, mobile startups in China and India are urging app developers to embrace mobile real-time bidding (RTB). Two such companies, AppFlood and, both launched RTB platforms on Tuesday.

China-based mobile ad network AppFlood launched a mobile RTB ad exchange and demand-side platform (DSP) designed to serve publishers and advertisers across the globe.

“We want to be the leading global RTB solution for bridging the West and the East,” said Si Shen, CEO of AppFlood’s parent company, Papaya Mobile, a gaming monetization platform. “We have offices in Beijing, San Francisco and London and we see a lot of publishers that want traffic from outside of China as well as advertisers who want to reach China but don’t know how.”

AppFlood’s mobile ad network is used by approximately 9,000 Android and iOS developers and drives about 100,000 daily installs. The ad exchange integrates into several US and China-based supply-side platforms (SSPs) including OpenX, AdMob, InMobi, AdView, MobiSage and AdsMogo and the DSP PocketMath.


Foursquare Leverages 'Check-In' Data Trove, Eyes LatAm Expansion

EricFriedmanAs consumer apps companies ramp up efforts in geo-targeted ads and hyper-local search, Foursquare has responded by turning check-in data into marketing services opportunities.

Following a February announcement that Microsoft would invest $15 million in the location-savvy startup after its $35 million Series D in December, Foursquare’s revenue stream – and data reach – may get a substantial boost as a result of the licensing deal.

The company is next making a push into Latin America, working with IMS Internet Media Services to scale Foursquare Ads in mobile-centric emerging markets in the next few months. The independent marketing and media company has served as the exclusive sales partner for many major consumer apps companies including Google-owned Waze, Spotify and Twitter.

Eric Friedman, director of sales and revenue operations at Foursquare, spoke with AdExchanger about Foursquare’s Latin American aspirations and its 45-millon-consumer-strong data differentiator.

AdExchanger: How has mobile penetration in Latin America fueled your expansion plans?

ERIC FRIEDMAN: We’ve seen pretty serious growth in marketplaces like Brazil, Argentina and Mexico and we’re looking to bring a lot of what we found success with in the US down there, targeting the late spring/early summer time frame. We like to prove out a lot of things we’re doing before we move into other markets and then want to step on the gas in that area. We’re really excited to work with IMS because they bring cultural expertise to the table. We built out a sales team in the US here, and we were really excited to talk to the brands and agencies down there, but they’ve had feet on the street so to speak for years, which is going to be really helpful bringing our products to Latin America.


4INFO CEO: Location Data Is Not ‘The End Game’ In Mobile Advertising

Tim-JenkinsMobile ad platform 4INFO ties mobile ad campaigns to offline conversion rates by matching offline consumer data with mobile devices on a household level.

Founded in 2004, the company started out as a SMS publishing company but pivoted to mobile advertising in 2010. Its client roster includes Macy’s, Target, Kraft, Campbell’s, Walmart and Southwest Airlines. The San Mateo, Calif., company raised $8 million in its latest round of funding in August, bringing its funding total to $64.3 million. AdExchanger spoke with CEO Tim Jenkins.

AdExchanger: Where does 4INFO fit in the ad ecosystem?

TIM JENKINS: Our stake in the ecosystem is what’s happening in mobile made measurable. In 2011, when I took over as CEO, the company was trying to find itself. We set out to understand why marketers weren’t spending in mobile. Brand marketers told us it was the lack of tangible ROI.

How does your technology work?

We use a key to match data systems and transactions and close the loop on the measurement side. With our technology, we can associate 150 million mobile devices with more than 100 million households.

We built a database that has the device IDs that are associated with a specific home location – all completely anonymized – which we can reverse geocode to an address. That address is used as a match key with offline data sources like Nielsen Catalina, Acxiom and Experian. On top of that, those same addresses with the same match keys are matched to transaction systems. (more…)

Columbia Drives In-Store Sales With Location-Based Mobile Ads

columbiaLocation data is a key component of many mobile ad strategies, but more is needed to make the ads relevant. Sportswear company Columbia wanted to reach people who were likely to be interested in its Omni-Heat jackets, but it knew that serving ads in cold climates wasn’t enough.

Through the ad agency BSSP, Columbia tapped mobile ad platform xAd to help it drive consumers to retailers that carried its Omni-Heat jackets. But instead of delivering ads to anyone who entered a geofence, Columbia only targeted users who had shown an interest in jackets and other criteria.

“We were looking for a smarter way to tell people about our jackets,” said Natalie Hayes, advertising and media manager for Columbia. “So based on whether you were within a certain range of one of our retailers and your previous search behavior, only then would we serve you an ad.”

Columbia ran the campaign between September and December last year in several cities with cold climates, including Chicago, Boston, Minneapolis, Cleveland and Kansas City.

Using the lat/long data that comes from an ad request on a mobile device, the ad agency BSSP bid on impressions on Columbia’s behalf. The agency targeted smartphone users who were approximately within a one-mile radius of a retailer that carried the brand’s jackets and had performed certain actions, such as looking up a store or doing a keyword search for winter jackets.