Even as money both smart and dumb seems to be rushing into mobile media on all fronts, a concurrent skepticism about the effectiveness of standard banners and interstitials on smartphones especially seems always to hover vaguely in press coverage of the platform. Senior executives at major agencies are quoted waxing doubtful about the diminutive real estate available to their lush and gorgeous brand campaign aims. And you can be sure that some general mention of “fat finger” syndrome will crop up somewhere, too.
This is the year mobile will be called upon to prove itself again and again -- and in many different ways -- just the way online display and video had to do over the last decade. Remember when publishers were giving away Dynamic Logic brand lift studies with their campaigns, some even guaranteeing performance? Expect ever more measurement products to come to market in mobile this year, and don't be surprised if publishers start offering up similar guarantees of success.
And so, as if on cue, Nielsen this week launches its Mobile Brand Effect product. The platform will use in-app surveys to report on a campaign’s impact according to its own marketing goals as well as the usual brand lift measures: awareness, attitude, favorability and purchase intent. The idea, of course, is to offer marketers the familiar branding metrics they can compare to other offline and online efforts.
Nielsen is implementing the product as a Web dashboard to allow for real-time reporting and optimization. Marketers as well as other collaborating stakeholders in the campaign can see how the campaign is doing overall, by app and within audience segments.
Here’s hoping that one of the other byproducts of Nielsen’s approach will be more normalized and periodic reporting on general brand impact from mobile campaigns. This ecosystem needs benchmarks and persistent, unassailable proof after proof that this stuff works -- and how various formats and app segments perform against one another.
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