The Web people are accessing on their mobile and tablet devices is not the same one they use on their laptops and PCs, and marketers shouldn’t treat it as such.
According to a new study published by advertising and publishing platform Tapjoy (and conducted on the company’s behalf by Forrester Consulting), about half of consumers are ignoring automatically crated in-app advertisements, and even more (70%) find them distracting and interruptive.
“Mobile is an incredibly personalized experience, much more so than TV or the desktop-based Web,” Patrick Seybold, Tapjoy’s vice president of global communications, tells Marketing Daily. “We all customize our mobile experience, and it’s incredibly jarring to be pulled out of that and served an unexpected advertisement.”
Of those that are being noticed, very few are making a good impression. According to the study, only 17% of consumers found current in-app adds interesting, while only 14% found them relevant and 12% found them engaging.
If marketers want to engage consumers through in-app advertising, there are several points they need to remember, including the fact that different mobile channels (from QR codes to apps) are used differently, that mobile can be very effective at reaching niche groups, and that quick engagements are more effective than long-term interruptive approaches.
“Instead of just moving a TV spot over to mobile and asking users to watch a long-form commercial in the middle of using their app, which they might find disruptive to their mobile experience, try getting them to take a quick and easy action, like subscribing to an email or like a Facebook page, in exchange for a reward,” he says.
At the same time, more than one-third of adult smartphone users said they’d prefer an ad-driven avenue for downloading apps, indicating they understand that to make the apps free, they have to have some sort of advertising. Two-fifths (40%) said the model could be better if they were able to pick an ad from several options.
When it comes to future in-app advertising, consumers’ top request is that the ads not interrupt their usage of the app (selected by 68% of respondents). Furthermore, 59% said they want to be offered a reward in exchange for interacting with the ad.
“Consumers are telling us that standard banner-based advertising on mobile isn’t what they want, but that ad sponsored in-app rewards, or incentivized ads, are a more logical and effective way to connect with them,” Seybold says. “For example, brands can sponsor the premium content the consumer wants in their apps, whether it's minutes in their texting app, virtual currency in their game or paying for them to watch a movie. Consumers have shown they understand the virtual economy, and are willing to engage with their favorite brands in exchange for the content they want, especially when they choose the brand to interact with.”