Mobile Marketing Live Report #mmliveglobal

A few notes from the excellent Mobile Marketing Live which happened in London this week.  This is a conference and exhibition from Mobile Marketing Magazine – which is well worth checking out for coverage of our amazing mobile industry.  There was a great mix of ad networks, marketing platforms and other service providers at the exhibition.  It was great meeting representatives from some of the companies we cover here including Strikead, Adfonic, Adsmobi and the excellent Trademob.   There really is a great buzz around mobile at the moment and some of the smartest and nicest people working in it and it was great to go somewhere that brought all this together.  Apparently there were 1000 people through the doors at Mobile Marketing Live and I’d definitely be one of them again.   There’s another decent roundup here and the mobile marketing crew have done a nice roundup of tweets from the hashtag.

These notes are all from the mobile advertising track on Day 1 which had some great speakers and a brilliant atmosphere.  The panel at the end of the session was very lively, with a great debate in particular between Paul Childs of Adfonic and Ravi Kamran.  One of the best panels I’ve seen for a while actually with robust debate about issues such as tracking, click fraud, rich media and more.

Anyway here’s the notes …

AdfonicPaul ChildsChief Marketing Officer and Founder

Paul gave a good talk focusing on real time bidding (RTB) in mobile.  Adfonic has been one of the more innovative networks out there over the last year and now it seems to be positioning itself a bit more like  a DSP, as a ‘single buying point’.  They are also focusing heavily on RTB as part of this shift.  Paul is someone who really knows mobile and gave a great, intelligent talk – here’s the key points:

  • Real Time Bidding saves on process – no price negotiations, paper or trafficking
  • Algorithms mean that optimisation happens instantly
  • Advertisers can choose which publishers they want to buy from
  • Inventory is accessed directly – no ‘daisy chains’ of different ad networks
  • Typically click through is 59% higher on mobile RTB
  • Retargeting emerging – target users who have an app installed but are not using it

Trademob – Ravi Kamran – CEO and Founder

Ravi is the founder of Trademob who are making waves as a European mobile DSP – a bit like a version of Fiksu.  They focused very heavily on technology, data and programmatic buying and are a very impressive company.  Ravi was a great speaker because he wasn’t afraid to be controversial and talk about issues like click fraud.

  • there are loads of data points you need to track in a mobile campaign – clicks, cost per click, publishers, time, banner placement, device, operator etc
  • there are also lots of actions / conversions to track as well – sign-ups, registrations, installs, cost per install, purchases, CPA etc
  • Trademob tracks everything with a single SDK, independent of the traffic source (some ad networks offer tracking against their own inventory only)
  • You can track conversions etc based on a ‘fingerprint’ of a particular users
  • 1 active users = 3 downloads = 300 clicks = 100,000 impressions
  • Each impression can use 10 targeting parameters, so that’s 1m data points to keep track of!
  • The only way to do this is with technology – can’t be done manually
  • There is a huge amount of click fraud in the market – typically 30-40% – has been as high as 50% in campaigns Trademob have measured
  • Trademob have technology that protects advertisers against click fraud
  • Types of click fraud include: client side (getting people in China to click on ads or bots that hijack phones), server side click fraud (by publishers – creating clicks), unintended clicks (banner placement near buttons etc)

AppsnackSandy Shanman – General Manager

Appsnack is an interesting new player in the market.  They seem to be positioning themselves as a sort of combination of mobile ad creation tool, app platform and rich media service.  They definitely have a good value proposition in that they can create services much cheaper than creating an app.  They are also well positioned for the rise of rich media and for using mobile inventory from mainstream (rather than mobile/ mobile apps) publishers.  One to watch.  Here’s the notes:

  • Appsnack is a service that creates an ‘app-like’ service for mobile phones and tablets using HTML5
  • Saves advertisers from creating their own apps or sites
  • Is combined with media buying to provide a new route to market on mobile
  • Using comscore data – 50k topics covered
  • Charges on a cost-per-engagement (CPE) basis, not cost per click
Panel Discussion 

The panel discussion as mentioned was very lively with some good back and forth between Ravi of Trademob and Paul of Adfonic on click fraud in particular.  Again here’s a few notes:

  • there are now over 120 mobile advertising networks globally
  • the click is an outdated metric – should move to LTV (life time value) or CPX (cost per X)
  • travel and banking apps looking for people spending $50 a month – will change industry to be much more scientific to seek out the type of users that will download, use and transact via those types of apps
  • blue icons are bad! – users don’t notice them so much on the screen
  • CPM is very high at the moment for rich media ads on mobile – hard to get ROI in terms of performance but good for branding
  • basic model for mobile ads is test, learn – launch a broad set of campaigns, then use data and algorithms, observe what’s happening, make changes
  • ad networks without data, algorithms will struggle to keep up as we move towards more performance based sales and RTB

Thanks again to the Mobile Marketing Live organisers – what a great event – we can’t wait for the next one!