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Navigating the Mobile Ecosystem

August 12, 2014

Chris O’Hara recently interviewed Lotame’s Kalyan Lanka for an Econsultancy report on mobile advertising. The report – ‘The new mobile display ecosystem’ – was published last week and is a solid read for brands and publishers looking to enhance their mobile strategies.

The report paints an eye-opening picture of the growth of mobile usage around the world, but then goes on to highlight the gap that exists between time spent on mobile devices and ad spend across mobile screens. The ‘Meeker Effect’ on mobile is incredibly stark, particularly when looked at alongside other channels, none of which are as misaligned.

The report goes on to delve into the issues that are holding back ad spend on mobile. These range from limited and non-standardized creative options, through to inconsistent mobile experiences across publishers. At the heart of the issue though, and a theme that is revisited throughout the report, is the lack of a universal ID that enables marketers to accurately track users across screens.

Unlike desktop advertising where cookies are a standard, in mobile users are considerably more elusive. Ironically, with more contextual signals flowing off mobile devices, there is a way bigger opportunity for marketers to reach consumers at the exact moment of truth. That’s why there’s so much frustration in the market – there’s such a compelling and rich opportunity but the technology to maximize it still isn’t where it needs to be.

As an industry, we need to stop getting hung up on the lack of a universal ID and instead focus on developing viable solutions that enable brands to run campaigns across screens. That was the driving force behind Lotame’s acquisition of AdMobius earlier this year. AdMobius’s technology, which is being integrated with our platform and is almost ready for primetime, will address this issue head on. Through the technology, publishers and brands will be able to accurately link and target consumers across screens.

Why is it so important to get this right? Not only to unlock the value of mobile, but also because the definition of mobile is continuing to expand beyond smartphones and tablets. Whether it’s wearables, in-car technology or connected household devices, the mobile category is continuing to fragment and with it, the pressure on marketers continues to increase. If we think things are complicated now, it’s only going to get worse – or better, depending on how you’ve prepared your business for this exciting new paradigm.