The IoT and our home town

Like most in the industry we are extremely interested to see how IoT technology is adopted in everyday life.

Cisco has produced this rather neat interactive page which shows how the new connectivity has been put to use in Hamburg in order to make the city work more efficiently and in a more environmentally friendly manner.

Mobile data used to enhance TV inventory targeting

An interesting piece here which highlights a couple of ways that mobile location (and potentially conversion) data is used to focus TV investment.

There’s still a way to go before broadcast TV becomes more individualised and addressable, but once again mobile appears to be an excellent means of enhancing other media channels’ effectiveness.

In-Store Retail Data Usage Unlocked By Mobile

There’s a rather concise summary of the various inter-connected trends occurring with in-store marketing and conversion optimization here.

Consumers’ movements, interactions and payments with smartphones are undoubtedly informing marketers’ decisions re how to redesign the shopping experience, but equally importantly – what specific products, attributes and messages are prioritized.

We can expect significant development in the coming 24-36 months. As with most markets it will probably be most pronounced at the very top and in the most mass environments. So expect to see the most innovation in luxury brand stores and larger hyper-type markets, although the latter may not always be easy to spot.

New mobile friendly Google algorithm imminent

We’re now less than one month away from Google’s new algorithm which goes live on the 21st April.

Apparently it will build on the principles put in place in 2013 which reward those sites which are well optimized for mobile.

Mobile web and apps are included, and there’s more detail on Google’s guidelines, as well as how to prepare and where to test here.

There seems little doubt that this is another key indicator of mobile’s growing significance within the marketing mix; something that we’re all well aware of.

It’s also perhaps an interesting and timely sign that Google is very aware of Facebook’s intense mobile focus, and therefore the need for it to also maintain a high development speed.

Demand for cross device video heats up

Seemingly more evidence of marketers increasingly deploying cross device activities. Data from video platform, Jun Group shows that requests for such activity have risen 270% YoY.

Article is here. Although there are multiple references to cross device it’s unclear how or indeed whether Jun Group are actually able to link several devices to a single consumer. Nevertheless evidence that demand for cross screen, consumer-centric marketing capabilities is clearly growing.

Open RTB 2.3 cracks native mobile

There’s been quite a lot of excitement about the latest OpenRTB 2.3 standard. Basically put, it enables native ads to be targeted, deployed and constructed on the fly via programmatic means.

We’re not usually massive fans of native ads, but they do seem to make a good deal of sense on mobile devices. Mobile is where people are naturally spending more and more of their time on social platforms, which is where native ads appear to work well for advertisers and consumers.

This is probably because they’re well integrated on the small screen, in contrast to the usual clumsy banner and banner derivatives which are often distributed around mobile apps and web.

If the new formats are more consumer-centric, which is a nice way of saying that they‘re less intrusive, then there’s a strong possibility that they’ll perform well in terms of response and the ability to enhance brand value.

This could have a profound effect on mobile average CPMs that currently track behind desktop levels, which would undoubtedly build further confidence and momentum in the channel.

There’s more context re the new standard in this recent Ad Exchanger article.

Many in the industry are getting excited that this is a great opportunity for native advertising to breakthrough. We think we’re witnessing one of the final requirements for mobile advertising to reach maturity.

Programmatic has to get more creative

Creativity in programmatic and other hyper targeted media seems to be on everyone’s lips at the moment – and rightly so in our view.

The fantastic complex profiling of audiences, who are then picked off by DSPs is great in so many ways. We have scope to do stuff that we never even dreamed about when we started in the industry.

But hang on. Why exactly did we join the industry? For many of us it was because we love advertising. We love its beauty, the way it can challenge, and when done well, its capability to immediately make us ache for something.

Advertising moves people emotionally, persuades them to buy products they don’t always need, and above all it changes the way individuals think and behave.

Vivaki’s Marco Bertozzi is right on the money here about how there’s a desperate need for more creative approaches to the way that advertising meets the consumer via programmatic.

As he says, this is especially salient in cross screen instances where there’s the opportunity to tell stories across devices, but a requirement to adapt the creative construct specifically for each screen.

If it’s been possible to move people emotionally just by sound via audio advertising, then surely it can’t be so hard to make something great from programmatically placed ads, given the quality of creative people and technologies that exist today.

BCG Report: 4G at the summit of Everest

If you have the time this BCG overview (here) is packed with plenty of detail on the mobile business sector.

As well providing a great deal of technical info regarding the makeup of the typical mobile operating stack, there’s a lot of useful data for marketers.

We learn that a 4G signal’s now available at the summit of Everest. OK – it’s still unclear how that can be productively be used for marketing purposes. But it’s clear that there are now fewer places to go on holiday to avoid email these days.

Much more relevantly the report explains that 20% of US Millennials only use their smartphones to go online. Once again, this is more evidence of why an advertiser’s mobile strategy is naturally becoming their digital strategy, as a result of such intense mobile adoption.

In fact 60% of global consumers who own a mobile use it as their primary means of getting online. We would suggest that marketers of consumer and lifestyle goods to audiences in their teens and 20s should seriously consider using mobile on their digital media schedules as the majority and the default.

Of course a layer of desktop activity could be included to optimise reach, but we would argue that mobile is the primary digital medium for this demographic and should therefore receive the significant majority of advertising dollars.

Clearly a significant amount of work is required in terms of creativity and impact on the small screen. But if it’s feasible to conduct complex banking transactions on a smartphone then it has to be possible to compellingly communicate a brand’s promise through a phone’s screen and controls.

We’ve already seen some very innovative creative formats successfully deployed. Ones that are designed for touchscreens, gyroscopes and that are enhanced by locational data. Native style formats are also not doing any harm either.

Measurement, whether it be in-browser or in-app can be a challenge but the latest probabilistic techniques that go beyond cookies would seem to be helping.

In fact significant progress in the field of tracking has been made in a very short time. Up until relatively recently it wasn’t even possible to track users in a smartphone browser when the phone moved between cellular and wifi. Now it can be done, which means mobile advertisements can be more effectively managed and attributed – as marketers expect.

And in the meantime if you do have plans to run a geo-fenced campaign aimed at the fearless Everest sherpas, you now know how to do it.

CEO Axonix: Increase revenue via mobile data

A thoughtful and practical set of guidelines (here) for mobile advertising and how to increase revenues, as one would expect from Simon Birkenhead, CEO Axonix.

As ever, common sense prevails, which means delivering ads that integrate well with the environment, and at times when the audience is most likely to engage.

Then there’s item number 4. Almost all mobile inventory is sold with no data attached as cookies usually don’t work with smartphones.

Simon makes the valid point that publishers can increase their yield, and advertisers can plan their campaigns much more effectively if they can profile and track users.

Once again this would appear to make the case for new tracking approaches which are device agnostic.

Cross Device Retargeting Next For The Economist

The Economist is the latest poster child for marketers ‘doing’ Programmatic themselves instead of having an agency team take care of it (article here).

Client in-housing remains pretty rare relative to the amount of discussion on the subject, and it’s clear that the larger majority of the marketing work is still done via the media agency in this example.

It’s interesting to read that once again cross device targeting is very high on the agenda though.

In this instance it’s retargeting across devices, which is likely to be a key requirement for a publisher such as The Economist which is read both at home and in the workplace.