Mobile advertising continues to show promising signs for publishers, most recently with a video advertising experiment from young women's magazine Nylon.
Mobile platforms offer a place where users are already captive, making it a good environment for rich and immersive ads, particularly with iPads
. (Nielsen research
and stats from Conde Nast
support this for the tablet. And MTV
has tried creative banner ads on smartphones with click-through success.) Video ads are one way to take advantage of the engagement levels.
Nylon recently began running pre-app commercials from major advertisers on its smartphone apps (and soon will also offer them on the iPad). Thumb Media Group (TMG)
, a mobile publishing provider that created the magazine's mobile app, announced a partnership with mobile video ad network iVdopia
to offer the targeted video ads.
The ads run on HTML
5 technology that enables them to load before launching the app (though it has to be connected to the Internet
to launch the mobile-Web-based app and ads). Users can choose to skip the ad or expand the video to watch it.
Mike Cartabiano, CEO of TMG, said campaign click-throughs on the video ads were over 19 percent for a couple of days (meaning users chose to expand the video) and consistently ran at 10 to 19 percent CTRs. Typical campaigns run for a week or until they hit the click-through target. He attributes success of click-throughs (compared to a typical banner add) to the fact that it's targeted to the user.
“It’s a very efficient and personal way to advertise,” he said. “Because we’re offering very targeted demographics to the audience, the advertising is very pertinent. They’re never shown anything that they wouldn’t be personally interested in.”
Cartabiano also said the publication's younger, global audience is increasingly tolerant of ads in smartphones ― particularly in magazines, where consumers are accustomed to seeing ads.
“It’s not just advertising, it’s high-quality entertainment,” he said.
TMG plans to extend the video ads to other publishers on its platform and is already experimenting with them for the wrestling publication WWE. The goal is to also allow magazine clients to sell their own rich media advertising in bundled packages with print and online — something larger publishers can already take advantage of.
In addition to working with publishers as a mobile video ad network, iVdopia can license its video technology to publishers who want to sell ads directly, said Ryan McConville, iVdopia's director of business development.
The company facilitates both pre-app and in-app video ads, including video banner ads. Another engagement element is a social media landing page at the end of the video, encouraging users to share the ad. (Demos
are available on the website.)
“Our ads are like a cover spread — what we don’t sell is those one-third black-and-whites in the back of the book,” McConville said.
Not only are advertisements getting more creative, but so are mobile ad metrics
. While McConville says most ads still sell on a CPM
basis, measuring success is moving more toward engagement rates. For instance, how many tweeted or re-watched the video? "That to us is a much more colorful understanding of what was going on with people as they experienced the ad," he said.