How much should I pay for mobile advertising?

27 05 2009

The answer should be: as much or as little as you want. But the reality is completely different.
I have been trying for quite a while to find mobile advertising networks, or mobile social networking sites to run one of my small campaigns targeting South Africa. By small I mean $100. I know is not much money, but I would have thought that if I had money to spend, mobile advertising companies, social networks and mobile search engines would be happy to take my money and let me try out their services.  But the minimum expenditure by campaign in some of them is so high that only the big fish can swim in those waters.

Let’s be honest, everybody says that is still early days for mobile advertising…well, no kidding! There are only a number of brands that can afford and are willing to test out a new medium like mobile for the reasonable price of $10,000. I am no fool, I know that big money comes from big companies, money calls money. But what happens to the long tail of advertisers that don’t have the big bucks but still see potential in mobile advertising? In this case, you have very few options – Google, Admob, Decktrade, Mojiva or Buzzcity (that I know)…which are great ad networks, but maybe not the only ones I would like to target.

Let’s say that I’m interested in local search and I’m a local garage that wants to target people in my city only, my only choice is to go to Google as Yahoo! would cost me a minimum of $10,000(ekk).
Let’s say I want to promote my new song from my small independent band: Nokia wouldn’t let me for less than $5,000 and Itsmy – on a more reasonable range – would charge $500 (although I want to thank them again for letting me try their services with a $100 campaign). In this same range is another mobile search engine, Taptu.

So isn’t the Mobile advertising industry interested in the long tail? Thanks to mobile analytics solutions, such as Bango Analytics, we see traffic from all over the world accessing the mobile web. We see new markets using the mobile web more and more. Small businesses with small budgets have potential customers in those markets, and guess what – they all have mobile phones.
I wonder why advertising networks that have the online back end to manage mobile campaigns don’t open their networks to smaller advertisers. And those ones that haven’t got the online platform, what are they waiting for?


If you are a mobile ad network or a mobile search engine, and have a flexible pricing model, please send us your website so we can tick you as friendly small advertiser provider.  We should create a badge for these kind of companies!!!

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Yahoo! Mobile ad services unable to connect

29 10 2008

I have been trying to test out Yahoo! mobile search advertising for a while now…

The first time I contacted them was at the end of September, I went to Yahoo!’s website and went into the advertisement options with the intention to set up a mobile search campaign. I started with the targeting options but soon I realised that in this process, I wasn’t going to be offered the possibility to set up my campaign for mobile. I went back to the website and found a UK telephone number to ring. A lady told me she couldn’t find anyone to help me at that moment, but she kindly took my phone number and told me someone would call me. That didn’t happen.

The second time I rang them was the beginning of October and this time I was given a telephone number in Barcelona (Spain). I was told that Yahoo!’s mobile division was based there. Since I’m Spanish, I rushed to call them and communicate in my mother tongue, unfortunately all I got was an answering machine. I left a message anyway, asking for somebody to call me, but that hasn’t happened yet either.

Last week I came across this url: http://mobile.yahoo.com. I went to find out if that was the place I could set up my mobile campaign on line. I pressed the Start Connecting button in the advertisers area, hoping to start my campaign straight away. Unfortunately all you can do there is fill a form showing your interest in mobile search advertising, and guess what…nobody has contacted me yet.

It has been a month and I have scoured two different websites and rang two different telephone numbers, with no results! Yahoo! is not making it easy to try their mobile search advertising program. Isn’t Yahoo! interested in the long tail advertisers?

I’m quite surprised about the long list of companies that don’t have an online sign up processes yet, especially since some smaller companies like Decktrade or Admob, let you set up a mobile advertising campaign in minutes. Companies like Yahoo! are shaping the future of mobile search and mobile advertising but are failing to provide basic information on how to get started. The least they could do is start phoning those who are eager to embrace mobile marketing.

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How I use mobile analytics to measure mobile advertising II Part

3 10 2008

I said last week in my post ”How I use mobile analytics to measure mobile advertising” that I would report back the results of the campaign I run on Decktrade. As the Decktrade campaign didn’t start running at the same time as the Google and Mojiva campaigns, I decided to keep these two running, so I would obtain results based on the same dates.

For $5 daily budget, campaigns running from the 22nd to the 26th of September and using
Bango mobile analytics to measure results,  the results are:

Decktrade

Google

Mojiva

293 page views

228 unique visitors

27 unique countries

46 unique operators

107 unique devices

117 page views

85 unique visitors

13 unique countries

27 unique operators

44 unique devices

75 page views

63 unique visitors

3 unique countries

11 unique operators

28 unique devices

Looking at the page views and unique visitor results, what I see is that Decktrade gives me a considerable higher number of repeat visitors, and a higher number of clicks on my ad. This makes me  think they have a much bigger network than Mojiva, which reports a quarter of those clicks for the same amount of money. Google’s results are more difficult to judge because they do depend on my selected keywords, and rather than general browsing on the mobile web, they reflect the amount of people actively searching for my selected keywords. Overall it’s great news for mobile marketers because it proves that people are searching on the mobile web.

Now, let’s have a look at the conversion rates: the objective of this campaign was to download a free chart. Let’s see what we got:

Bango mobile analytics goal comparison feature

Bango mobile analytics goal comparison feature

Overall I’m VERY happy to see an average conversion rate of 35.05%. Decktrade performed very well with a 38.57%, Mojiva 24% and Google 33.33%. Now, the real point of this is to check those conversions* against the money I spent on the campaigns. I have added those figures in pink. And who is my winning campaign on this occasion? That would be Google, because even though the conversion rate wasn’t the best of the 3 it turns out that I only paid $10 for those conversions, and $25 for the others.
Does this mean that Google is better than Decktrade or Mojiva? Absolutely not! The only thing that tells me is that when people initiate a conversation they are more proactive in engaging with your brand because your ad is relevant to the purpose of their search.

Relevancy = Success and better ROI.  When planning your next campaign think twice when choosing the categories you want to put your ad on and get a mobile analytics tool that gives you an X-ray of your visitors and your conversions.  This means you know how to talk to your potential customers the next time you get the chance to engage with them.

*I said last week that I didn’t have any conversions, and in fact I did, Bango analytics wasn’t synchronizing the info properly, but that is fixed now and I was able to go back and capture that data….and I’m so happy about it! 35% average conversion rate!!!

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