Joe Laszlo: February 2014 Archives

With the Oscars upon us this Sunday, naturally the movies are on everyone’s mind. That’s true of the IAB’s Mobile Center and InMobi as well. We teamed up with Decision Fuel to do a deep dive into how mobile helps people learn about movies and purchase tickets.

Our new research shows that mobile phones play an important role for moviegoers, one that studios marketing films and multiplexes attracting patrons must increasingly factor into their media plans if they’re looking to reach movie buffs at the moment they are selecting a film to go see, or even at the moment of purchase itself.

We first examined who mobile moviegoers are and how many films they watch. Fully half the moviegoing audience reports seeing a movie in a theater at least once a month, and 18% say they go to the movies three or more times per month.

Fifty-six percent of moviegoers say they use their mobile phones to learn more about movie and entertainment options, roughly equal to the 57% that learn about entertainment from TV.  Mobile phones are a much more important information source than PCs (used by 39%) or print media (used by 26%).

And mobile isn’t just an occasional information channel: 49% of moviegoers say they use their mobile phone “always” or “very often” to help plan their trips to the movies.

Mobile moviegoers also use their phones in tandem with other media to learn about movies and entertainment: 87% turn to mobile after seeing ads for movies on other channels. Movie marketers must master the art of weaving mobile into a comprehensive mixed media strategy.

Mobile moviegoers use their phones at all stages throughout the movie trip process—during pre-show activities such as planning and purchasing, at the theater to “check-in”, and after the show to plan other events. All of these stages in the movie path-to-purchase are opportunities to reach these people and influence what they go see, incentivize them to spread the word, and encourage their next trip to the theater.

Finally, we looked at how mobile moviegoers purchase tickets. Thirty percent of moviegoers purchase movie tickets via their phones. This makes on-device ticket purchases comparable to PC online purchases (cited by 34% of moviegoers) and box office purchases at showtime (35% of moviegoers).

The study concludes with concrete advice to movie marketers, pointing out ways to leverage mobile at every step on a movie buff’s path to purchasing a ticket.

If there was an Oscar for Best Supporting Technology for Moviegoers, mobile phones would have a lock on it.  Whether the biggest blockbuster or the smallest indie flick, movie buffs leverage their phones to make the moviegoing experience easier.  IAB and InMobi are excited to help the movie industry track mobile’s importance, although we remind moviegoers everywhere:  once the film starts, please, silence your smartphones.

To view the full report visit

About the Author


Joe Laszlo

Joe Laszlo is Senior Director, Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence, at the IAB.