Results tagged “iab mobile marketing center of excellence” from IABlog

Mobile Discrepancies: Not as scary as you might think

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Discrepancies are one of the biggest headaches in the digital advertising ecosystem, but they are also something everyone deals with. As the industry has matured, standards have been created and adopted, vendor offerings and tracking have become more consistent, the internet has become faster and more stable and as a result the difference between two parties’ counts has decreased to an acceptable percentage (most of the time). Then, new technology is introduced that stirs the water and discrepancy percentages can become all over the place again. The mobile ecosystem has introduced an array of devices, operation systems and versions, applications and even new behaviors to the mix. Not to mention the inconsistency of a user’s connection when moving around in the physical world.  

All these new variables can be quite intimidating. How would you ever know where to start investigating a mobile discrepancy? Luckily it is not as scary as it sounds.  While it is true there are additional variables to take into consideration, the most common root causes still boil down to the same ones the industry has experienced for years with desktop campaigns: human error, when ad calls are made in the ad serving sequence, and differences in vendors reporting and targeting offerings. 

  • Human Error - The more manual steps needed to launch a campaign, the more room there is for errors to occur which may result in discrepancies. With new vendors and products plus the use of code based HTML5 creatives with many assets instead of a tidy flash file, the mobile marketplace isn’t as automated as the desktop marketplace.
  • Ad Serving Sequencing - Just like with desktop campaigns there are often multiple parties tracking a single campaign. Typically all of the ad calls don’t fire at once, even if they are all tracking the same thing.  Latency and short session time common in mobile make the difference in ad calls a more significant variable than on desktop. 
  • Reporting - Every vendor has their secret sauce to differentiate themselves in the marketplace. Sometimes it has to do with the metrics they measure or how they validate traffic. As the mobile marketplace matures reporting offerings will be become more consistent, but until then it is important to make sure you are comparing the same things across reports.  
  • Targeting - Similar to reporting targeting offerings will differ in their features and capabilities. While this is true for desktop targeting as well there is more variability in mobile such as multiple ways to identify location. 
IAB Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence’s new document Mobile Discrepancies: Exploring common root causes gives more detailed explanations of common discrepancy causes for mobile campaigns. Providing ample time to test and QA campaigns before launch is the most important thing you can do to avoid large discrepancies. It is important to not just test that the creative works, but also confirm all parties are tracking the same thing, especially when working with new partners. If not, it doesn’t matter what device you are running the campaign on, you are comparing apples to oranges. When these differences are discovered it is important to share that knowledge and work together to solve the problem. The more discrepancies causes are understood, the more they can be avoided fostering more trust in the mobile marketplace.
About the Author
Sabrina Alimi

Sabrina Alimi is the Senior Marketing Manager of the IAB Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence, where she has a focus on mobile ad operations and key mobile initiatives such as HTML best practices, mobile creative guidelines, discrepancies, and the future of the cookie. In addition, Sabrina leads the IAB’s Local Committee, exploring the opportunities that the use of location unlocks for mobile advertising. Prior to the IAB, Sabrina worked at Microsoft Advertising on the Atlas Media Console where she became a product expert providing technical support to clients and managing bug escalations. She can be reached on Twitter @SabrinaAlimi.

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Global Research: Mobile for Work and Shopping

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As both a founding supporter of the IAB Mobile Center of Excellence and a technology media company, IDG has a special interest in trying to better understand buyers and sellers.  Numerous research reports have chronicled the explosive adoption of mobile devices but for mobile advertising to accelerate, it is critical to identify buyer behaviors and, most importantly, buyer preferences. To that end, a recent IDG Global Solutions (IGS) online survey asked people in 43 countries how they use their mobile devices at work and when shopping.

The IGS survey of more than 25,000 tech professionals and tech enthusiasts provides revealing insights into the importance of mobile in the buying process, the perception of mobile advertising, and the behavioral shifts brought on by rapid adoption rates for both tablets and smartphones. The spring 2013 online research reveals that today’s mobile audience is highly engaged, always on, is increasingly receptive to mobile ads, and uses tablets and smartphones at each stage of the purchase process including buying! 

Personal and Work Lives Converge
Much has been written about the dramatic adoption rates for connected devices and mobile becoming the preferred channel for the tech savvy. However, the mobile momentum and ever-changing interaction with technology has led to major behavioral shifts. Users have migrated from the established separation of work and play toward an “always on” mentality reflected in the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) to work trend. Today, the lines between private lives and work are being erased with 41% of smartphone users and 37% of tablet users saying that they use privately purchased smartphones and tablets as business devices. The figures rise steeply in emerging regions such as Asia Pacific and Latin America where over 60% of respondents use their own devices on their work networks. Many of the respondents are among the most tech savvy, a group that serves as an early indicator of what is to come with the general population. 

Mobile Users Are Active Shoppers
The findings show that this 24/7 audience is actively searching for and recommending products, interacting with vendors and, importantly, is open to mobile advertising: when asked which formats they are most likely to engage with the IGS survey participants cited email, coupons, and location-based advertising.

Last year’s IGS research revealed that connected devices are an integral part of working life.   This year the survey focused more on which work activities are performed regularly on mobile devices. Smartphones and tablets are crucial tools starting with information collection and ending with a purchase.
At the product research stage 47% of all smartphone users and 67% of tablet users collect information with their devices. It is important to highlight that 40% of all smartphone users visit tech vendor sites in this process; therefore, mobile optimization is crucial for vendors. A positive mobile experience will impact brand perception and thus the final purchase as 30% of survey respondents said that they would not make a purchase with their smartphone if a site is not mobile optimized. The next stage — price comparison and checking with peers on social networks and forums — is also a tablet and smartphone activity. But most importantly, the audience is buying with their connected devices (73% of tablet users and 56% of smartphone users make purchases on their devices ). More surprisingly, nearly a quarter of professionals and tech enthusiasts make business purchases via their smartphones, while 21% make business purchases with their tablets.

Video Consumption for Entertainment and Work
Not only have technology platforms changed, different content formats are also preferred by mobile users in comparison to the wired web. Ninety percent of all tablet users said they watch video content on their device (up from 66% in 2012) while 67% indicated that they watch videos on their small-screen smartphones. Most interesting from a marketer’s point of view is the fact that users do not just watch YouTube videos and movies but also access vendor content and reviews. One-third of all respondents watch promotional videos on their tablets and 40% view videos/webcasts related to their jobs.

The many years and predictions of “this is the year of mobile” are over. Mobile adoption rates have soared for a few years as shipments of PCs continue to decline.  Marketers and media companies must respond to their prospects and audiences as they accelerate their reliance on mobile devices for interaction, entertainment, and purchase activities. 

Note: To see more survey details and charts go to .

About the Author
Christina Carstensen

Christina Carstensen has over thirteen years experience in the digital media space. For the past four years Christina has headed up IDG’s Mobile offering, developing& executing mobile led strategy and programs specifically designed to connect to an ever-growing mobile audience.
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