IAB Issues New Mobile Marketing Guidelines, Tackles Cross-Device Targeting

Mobile marketing would be so much easier if everyone used one device.

Yet because that’s not the case, the Interactive Advertising Bureau has released new guidelines to help marketers navigate what it calls multiple mobile “identity management.”

The guidelines encompass identifiers required for user-level mobile and cross-screen marketing activities, as well as ways to improve ad targeting, measurement, attribution and relevancy.

The IAB also outlines the pros and cons of various methodologies used to anonymously match and map users and devices.

Among other challenges, cookies often vary across mobile devices -- and across mobile Web and app environments -- which makes them a less reliable identification method.

In response, mobile marketers must resort to a mix of tracking methods, according to Anna Bager, senior vice president and general manager, mobile and video, at the IAB.

“Today’s consumers are juggling up to four different devices on a daily basis, making effective cross-device targeting critical for brands,” Bager stated on Tuesday.

It's important for marketers to recognize that mobile device manufacturers and operating system providers offer several identifiers for differentiating individual device owners -- only some of which can be used for consumer-marketing purposes.

In the realm of hardware, these identifiers include the Universal Device Identifier (UDID) and the Media Access Control (MAC) Address, while software options include the Google Android Advertising ID (AAID), the Apple iOS Advertising ID (IDFA) and the Microsoft Mobile OS Advertising ID.

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