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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Mobile SEO, search engines and directories for the mobile web

30 04 2009

In our effort to get our  Mobislim mobile site ranking and SEO optimized, I found this blog post “The place to be: mobile search engines and portals where you should register your site” at mobithinking.com, which is just exactly what we needed for our mobile site mobislim.com.  Thank you mobithinking for sharing this with all of us! This is great information and I thought I would help to spread the word.

Not all the big operators and content sites uses Yahoo!, Google  and Microsoft as default search , so they advise you to register with white-label providers such as Medio or Jumptap. Here is a list of search engines where you should register your mobile site

  • Find.mobi: search for your site on find.mobi.
  • Yahoo oneSearch: search for your site on yahoo.mobi; and submit site here.
  • Taptu: search for your site on taptu.mobi; and submit site here.
  • Seek4Wap: search for your site on Seek4Wap; and submit site here.
  • Microsoft Live: search for your site here: live.mobi; submit site here.
  • Medio Systems: submit site here.
  • Jumptap: submit site here.
  • Google: search for your site on google.mobi; submit site map here.

For lots more mobile search providers, see wapSwap (also includes directories and portals) and the excellent WAPReview.mobi.

There are countless mobile directories and portals of varying quality and depth of content, as well as geographical and vertical focus (check which ones allow/disallow adult content for example). Most have links to submit a URL from either the home page or from a particular category. Some may request a link in return. There’s a good list of directories of mobile and PDA sites on WAPReview.mobi (including some non-English speaking ones).

Here is a handful of directories to get you started:

See this very handy list of both directories and search providers with many direct links to submit your site from UK mobile agency We Love Mobile (thanks to Simon Liss for this).

I guess Tom and his SEO squad will be quite busy these days sending our site to all these search engines and directories. I will report back on how this helped to our rankings.  We’ll use Bango Mobile  Analytics referrer information to check how much traffic the search engines and directories are sending us, and best of all which keywords people are using to get to our site.

If you have more search engines and directories that we should be mentioning please let me know so we can give something back to mobithinking.

Follow Mobislim updates on twitter  http://twitter.com/mobislim

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Mobile SEO, we want Google Mobile Search to love us a bit more…

27 04 2009

Apparently our mobile site mobislim.com wasn’t very (or not at all) SEO optimized…

Tom Thurston, our WAP master and  mobile SEO mentor, reviewed our site from an SEO point of view, and this is what he had to say:

“It’s dire. We don’t even rank for “slimming”, even though our site is all about it. (Annoyingly lots of non-mobile slimming sites come up in the mobile searches as well). I am therefore changing the Mobislim CMS to publish “SEO friendly” URLs as well as deploying a number of other SEO tactics.”

I love his determination! Check his blog to find out the technical bits about what he is talking about.

So yesterday he deployed Mobislim v2 which is now governed by the Scorch Controller, that he has created himself. This Java Spring MVC based controller framework ensures that our slimming diets and health site now benefits from SEO friendly URLs.

As an example:

Old URL for an article about a slimming product: if you read this, you wouldn’t know what that page is about…well, guess what, Google wouldn’t know either!

http://mobislim.com?p=ax5_zx2

New URL SEO friendly: just by looking at it you know is about hoodie gordonini, that is an article and that is a slimming product! Google has -at least- to like us a bit.

http://mobislim.com/k-zfve/slimming-products/article/5/hoodia-gordonini.htm

In addition to this – page titles and page meta tags are now based on the assets / articles being viewed. We are also using the heading tags when presenting article titles. The combination of the above should lead to a whole load of hot loving from Google mobile search.

We have a new site map that we have sent today to Google and now let’s see what happens in the next few weeks.

REALITY CHECK: Let’s see our rankings…

The only thing we rank for, and in the 9th position is for “slimming charts” 😦

This is what I would like to see mobilsim ranking for:

“Slimming tips” “healthy diets” “lose weight” “diets” “slimming” Very competitive terms on search, but focusing our efforts in content creation and SEO technical aspects, I think we can get there…

So here is my challenge Tom, will we or will we not be able to rank for these keywords in the next 2-3 months?

Follow our mobile SEO mission here and in twitter and learn with us how to get your site optimize!

http://twitter.com/mobislim

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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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