Demystifying Mobile Advertising

If you look around you now, you might see people gathered around, all looking at their mobile phones. You might see commuters walking frantically with their headphones on, listening to music or GPS directions to their destination. You might even see a food blogger uploading a picture of their lunch to social media to make a living. Whatever the case, it is quite clear that we are heavily dependent on our phones. This growing trend of phone usage has presented an opportunity for advertisers to target those browsing on mobiles. This article is based on mobile advertising and some of its benefits.

Is mobile advertising more effective than desktop?

Mobile advertising is forecasted to drive three-quarters of total digital ad-spend in 2018. This is no surprise given that the percentage of visits from mobile devices grew from 57% in 2016 to 63% in 2017, this trend is expected to continue over 2018. Mobiles are simply more accessible than desktops. But the benefits of portability come at a small price of advertisers having to optimise campaigns for smaller screens as well as desktop campaigns if they are running both.

User intention differs across mobile and desktop so it should be considered a different market for advertisers. For instance, mobile search is typically for immediate needs, information based on location and other long-tail queries (with the rise of voice search). Mobile search in 2015 exceeded that of desktop. The potential of mobile advertising can be seen when looking at e-commerce sales, for example, in 2015 Burberry reported that mobile sales were higher than desktop.

How can you encourage high engagement on mobile ads?

For every television there is in a household, there are, on average, three mobiles. Not only does online media allow you to optimise and target your campaigns, digital media and in particular, mobile adverts drive a much higher engagement. A form of mobile advertising which drives a high level of engagement is in-app advertising, whether it’s banner ads, full-screen transition video ads, native ads or rewarded video, such as watching a short advert and getting 30 minutes of uninterrupted music on Spotify. In-app advertising is proving to be a healthy avenue of investment:  in 2016, time spent on apps increased by 11% and by 6% in 2017. Utilising apps as a supplement is becoming increasingly popular, whether that’s for an e-commerce store or to help retain engagement for a reality TV show. A viable method of marketing apps is through a cost per install PPC campaign, so advertisers only pay when somebody installs an app and gains more visibility.

Is SMS Marketing effective?

The other type of mobile marketing is SMS marketing. SMS marketing is known to be more than seven times more effective than email campaigns. This is due to SMS being more visible than emails and campaigns are usually more targeted than that of an email campaign. The average open rate of an SMS campaign is 98% whilst an email campaign is merely 20%.

What can Brightblue say about Mobile Advertisement returns?

At Brightblue Consulting we measure the impacts of drivers of sales, including a deep-dive in media channels. We observe a general increase in digital media spend and its effectiveness, this includes display, social and search across both mobile and desktop. This is something we are keen to measure, however data suppliers tend to aggregate digital media across mobile and desktop, so one limitation in measuring the effectiveness of mobile advertising is the data availability.


Brightblue Consulting are a London based consultancy which help businesses drive incremental profit from their data. We provide predictive analytics that enable clients to make informed decisions based on data and industry knowledge. Through Market Mix Modelling, a strand of Econometrics, Brightblue has a proven track record showing a 30% improvement in marketing Return on Investment for clients’ spend. If you are interested to find out more please contact us through email by clicking here and one of our consultants will get back to you shortly.

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