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Rich Media Ads Can Optimize Mobile Sites

Publishers are seeing more of their mobile content being consumed on a massive scale by audiences. Those that want to capitalize on this trend are exploring various options for advertising. Mobile banner ads are one, but it can also be helpful for publishers to consider carving out rich media advertising inventory for their sites.

Here are some points to remember when making that decision:

What: Rich media in mobile advertising allows a range of creative high impact, immersive ad units to run on mobile Web sites or mobile apps. This typically includes interactive elements that offer some kind of engagement on the ad. These include: expand the unit, tap-to-call, tap-to-coupon, shake to open, play a video, play a game, find a location or even tap to buy.

Rich media offers interactive experiences to users that go beyond viewing text, pictures or animations. Anything done in a mobile site or app, is in the ad unit via a rich media execution.

Publishers utilizing rich media for mobile ad inventory need to ensure their site is tested to accept rich media from all providers. This means running test tags within your site to ensure the creative works correctly.

Why:  The format uses sophisticated graphics, animation, games or streaming video to provide an immersive user experience, enabling advertisers to reach consumers and inspire interaction with the brand. Plus, these interactions can be finely measured to gauge how deep a consumer wants to be immersed with a brand.

Are creative concepts resonating more with specific sites or audiences? Are audiences in a particular Zip code active during a certain time of the day? By having this type of data available in real-time, marketers have the power to adjust quickly to optimize their campaigns. It’s every marketer’s dream to be able to split test in such a granular way and still offer an engaging experience to users.

Rich media units also allow users to interact with the ad without leaving the app or page. With limited real estate in mobile, a marketer, publisher or app developer won’t want to interrupt users and take them away from the primary page or app they are accessing.

In general, rich media campaigns tend to be sold at a higher CPM than banners, simply because it is a far more premium placement, with more resources required to ensure the best experience is rendered.

Costs: There are a few important cost factors to consider when serving mobile rich media ads. The amount of resources you have to run rich media testing, ongoing resources to manage new rich media campaigns, and who will manage the rich media vendor relationships.

Standardization enacted by the IAB and MMA is making interoperability on rich media ads easier, allowing almost any publisher to run them with minimum adjustments to their ad server settings.

Who: Agencies and brand marketers view rich media as a way to deliver emotion mobile ads. Rich media ads typically result in a 2.5% higher interaction rate than standard mobile banners.

Also, user-initiated ads, such as expandable banners, are effective in collecting consumer responses and measuring engagement. This is essential for proving the ROI with advertising partners. Publishers can also gain insight into user behavior for tailoring future campaigns. based on preferences such as keywords, daypart or carrier. 

The rising popularity of tablets represents an even bigger opportunity for rich media, given the larger screens and ability to interact more easily with ads.

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