Rohit Dadwal
Jun 30, 2011

Innovation – the key to mobile advertising growth

Google recently reported that mobile ad revenue in Asia Pacific would hit $6.9 billion in 2015. While there is no doubt that market expansion will contribute to this growth, innovation is the key ...

Innovation – the key to mobile advertising growth

Google recently reported that mobile ad revenue in Asia Pacific would hit $6.9 billion in 2015. While there is no doubt that market expansion will contribute to this growth, innovation is the key driver to ensuring sustainable mobile advertising growth, even after infant markets become saturated. There are two parts to this driver: technological innovations, and new big ideas that provide value to consumers.

Technological innovations

In order to encourage more brands to choose mobile as an advertising medium, agencies and developers must demonstrate that new technological innovations are capable of engaging and converting users in unprecedented and effective ways.

For instance, agencies could capitalise on augmented reality (AR) technologies, by combining them with either entertainment or utility to create new user experiences. In a campaign for Hennessy, Cherrypicks Ltd created an app that combined location-enabled technology with AR, resulting in an app that gave a sensational user experience. By pointing the smartphone to the “Hennessy Artistry” coaster or Hennessy V.S.O.P bottle label, the Hennessy Viewer app showed animations of drinks being prepared. Users could also collect and upload stamps to the “My Hennessy” score chart to win great prizes. (Click here to watch the video).

Innovations in location-based services will also be attractive to end users and advertisers because of the utilities they offer. Dentsu Inc came up with iButterfly, a savvy location-based technology that is combined with a gaming element. At different locations, users must swish their iPhone to catch various virtual “butterflies”, which are actually coupons that may be redeemed at nearby retailers. For some retailers such as Adidas, more butterflies translate into higher discounts for shoes. Butterflies also vary in design according to locations, and users may trade with their friends. (Click here to watch the video.)

Harnessing creativity

Acquiring technological innovations is only half the equation – the other half being creativity, or the big ideas. The use of mobile apps will become more pervasive if they create value for users through utility or entertainment. Here, the technology is not as important as how it is being used.

In a campaign to promote mobile internet, TurkCell the leading telecommunications provider in Turkey launched a creative campaign revolving around Twitter. Using a live video feed they showed boxes filled with smartphones to be given away. Each box had layers of post-its pasted on top. To join the game, players had to tweet the messages written on the post-its, for the box to be unveiled. As a result, #turkcelltweets quickly trended for a week, and TurkCell’s messages were spread among 3.6 million users. This campaign is a great example of how a big idea was introduced to a ubiquitous platform.

Combining technological innovation with big ideas

Ideally, the way forward in growing the mobile advertising industry is to combine technological innovations with big ideas. Not only does this lead to effective ads with high returns on investment (ROI), it also leads to an exciting era of novel user experiences and groundbreaking connections between businesses and consumers.

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