I tried to be a good entertainment consumer this week and play the mobile marketing game as Hollywood intends. "Wall-E" and "Wanted" are two of the more enticing film releases tomorrow, and like clockwork, licensed mobile game versions of both films appeared on my phone by mid-week. In a perfect mobile marketing world, these games would serve a promotional function in generating pre-release interest and then extend the brand by letting filmgoers relive the experience (maybe even prompt a second go). Of course, in a perfect mobile marketing world, the game versions of media properties would be good.
In some pathetic circles of men, mobile search has become a hunting/gathering ritual. When Nielsen Mobile released its Q1 2008 market share stats last week, the headlines focused on Google's dominance of the field with 61% search share. I was struck a bit more by the gender imbalance in searches, with Google skewing 65% male and Yahoo 63%. Sure, there is the usual early-adopter gender bias at work here. Boys will be gadgeteers. But we all have seen the cluster of guys doing a mobile search race. Asking "Where is the nearest Staples?" is like throwing red meat to wolves. …
Controversies over programming types, formats and especially ad units in Web video only get larger as the screen gets smaller.
Cellfire is the kind of mobile savings tool dedicated couponers love. Like a phone-based weekly circular or snail mail ValuePack, the applications sits on your phone and maintains coupons from partnered vendors in your general area. Hollywood Video and 1-800-Flowers have been longtime partners, but the company has expanded to Sears, SuperCuts, McDonalds and scores more.
From the time I first played with mobile widgets Plusmo and WidSets, the format appealed to me as a cool way to organize data sources on a phone. Like their online counterparts, mobile widgets let you skim across a range of data quickly and customize the experience in an attractive way. Take the new version of Zumobi that launched last week. Zumobi is a Windows Mobile widget platform that started at Microsoft and then got spun out into its own company in order to develop on other OSes. The BlackBerry version is imminent.
As longtime readers already know, my teenage daughter and her incessant cell phone use is a bottomless pit of market research for me. Most kids have to remind their parents "I am not a child." Mine just barks, "I am not a focus group. " I believe she is getting this slogan printed on T-shirts and occasionally makes tattoo threats.
Now that the media spotlight moves towards mobile, predictably the bad actors start getting a disproportionate share of attention. As OnlineMediaDaily's own Wendy Davis reports this morning, Google is on the receiving end of a lawsuit involving deceptive practices among some of its ringtone advertisers. Google has a standing policy about how landing pages for these ads must outline terms and conditions in a fair way. The litigant claims Google is not enforcing its own policy. This suit comes on the heels of a settlement with AT&T last week over phone charges involving mobile content subscriptions.
"Your phone is screwed up," my daughter announces as she hands it back to me in disgust. "You wrecked it." Actually, all I did was customize the phone by pushing all of those iPhone and Web app icons around to my liking. In the process, I rudely obstructed my daughter's hijacking of my phone as her back-up device.