Do 'Ads' Even Work In Mobile?

A decade into the emergence of mobile marketing, and the question still lingers: Do ads even work on phones? That’s the core question addressed by a panel of agency experts today at OMMA Mobile. The banner has long been dismissed as a mobile format, but what other approaches are effective?

Barry Lowenthal of The Media Kitchen points to click-to-call as the best mobile ad type because it’s geared to the medium. Ian Schafer of Deep Focus suggests brands in mobile should focus more on CRM—providing help to people when they need it on the go.

What about native advertising?. Schafer says it only really works on platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest where its specific not only to each of those platforms but to the exact ways people are using them. They’ve each created artificial scarcity in that sense, within their own networks. But the approach doesn't necessarily work for other sites.

Another problem is achieving scale with native advertising, where it involves building custom executions. “How do we build these customized experiences, but still give brands the reach they need,” said Pankaj Bengani of mobile ad network inMobi. Even so, he added that InMobi has a goal that 50% of its business should be in native and not on banners. 

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