‘Mobile advertising is the next big thing…’ How many times have we all heard this statement?
While the industry continues to tout this disruptive idea, publishers and advertisers are left wondering what it will really take to bring mobile advertising to the next level. Current industry effective CPMs hover around $0.75 on mobile, compared to $3.50 on the desktop, making sustainability a key consideration for the industry. Clearly, there is a disparity between desktop and mobile advertising that needs to be addressed before brands will be able to fully utilize and embrace the small screen.
Since mobile advertising first emerged on smartphones with the basic and very limited 320x50 banner, the recent introduction of in-app contextual ads and innovative native approaches have begun to move the needle for advertisers. Recent reports indicate that mobile ads have finally begun to mature to rival their desktop counterparts due to significant advancements in mobile ad technologies, fueling the transfer of eyeballs to the small screen. In March 2013, MotorTrend and Chevrolet announced results from a native mobile ad campaign that supports the notion that mobile ads have finally matured, reporting a 37% engagement rate, 3x over industry benchmarks for mobile. I would argue that native ad experiences (those that are organic to the content experience and leverage the native capabilities of the device) are the future of mobile as a media platform and are imperative to making consumer brands as contextually relevant as possible to their target audiences.
Why is Mobile the Next Advertising Frontier? And why mobile over desktop? With nearly 110 million mobile smartphone subscribers and 30 million tablet users in the US, consumers are accessing content anytime, anywhere. As this trend continues, every publisher invested in mobile needs a more comprehensive monetization strategy that better addresses the unique consumption patterns of mobile users. It is not enough to simply apply the old ad formats from the web to mobile. Today, savvy publishers are going deeper to create engaging ad experiences for consumers.
Here are a list of native advertising capabilities that lend themselves to providing a more enhanced brand experience for advertisers, publishers and consumers:
In-Stream Advertising – This truly native ad experience mirrors editorial content and is delivered alongside existing content. This type of advertising is even more relevant on a mobile device because it satisfies an immediate content request in a short window of time. People don’t have time to click through a banner ad to an inconsistent content experience.
Real-time Ads with Dynamic Text – This innovation feeds real-time, dynamic text into rich media ad units on mobile devices, providing users with timely information such as breaking news, online deals and even stock information.
Geo-location – The device’s native capability allows brands to tap into geo-location information to drive action such as providing users with the ability to search for the nearest store location to drive foot-traffic and ultimately sales.
Passbook integration – This is another device-specific native feature on iOS that allows brands to present users with relevant coupons, gift cards and travel documents that need to be easily accessible while on-the-go. When coupled with geo-location now brands can deliver real-time deals to nearby devices and save them into Passbook in the form of coupons, boarding tickets and itineraries.
Long-form Content Modules – Since users often have the time to browse on mobile during downtime throughout their days, why not invest them in your brand through singularly focused, interesting content that captures and holds their attention? Here, brands have the opportunity to act as publishers by providing content that keeps people engaged.
Branded Loading Screens – This organic ad unit is engrained into the app itself and begins the brand experience as soon as the user launches the app, providing an elegant “presented by” content sponsorship that users of free apps and mobile content will value.
Save to the Home Screen Feature – This enables users to revisit branded content and to reengage with the brand at a later time. This is significant, as mobile users may not always have the time to interact with branded content in real-time.
How Do Publishers Drive Value for Brands? And how do advertisers better serve consumers? By combining several of the features above into a cohesive brand experience, one can only imagine the possibilities they will be able to unlock for on-the-go consumers.
Imagine a first-time mom sitting in a doctor’s reading an article about the top elementary schools in the Parenting app and being served a real-time Target ad that talks about a new sale on school supplies. She can click on the ad, pull up the promotion flier and be provided with the school supply shopping list she can save to Passbook, and is then presented then with local Target stores in her area along with coupons where she can pick up the items after her doctor visit. This is powerful advertising.
The global mobile advertising market will generate revenues of $12.8 billion in 2013, according to the latest research published by Informa Telecoms & Media in its “Mobile Advertising: Global Market Analysis and Forecasts 2011-2016.” That’s up from $8 billion in 2012. eMarketer also projects that U.S. mobile advertising will be at $7.28 billion industry in 2013. As people move away from their hardwired desktop computers and take on a mobile lifestyle, advertisers will need to shift strategies and adopt a better way to reach consumers on their most trusted personal computing devices – the ones that fit in the palm of their hands.
Ken is the CEO of Zumobi and has been actively involved in the development of mobile as a media platform since 2002. Read the full article on Wired here, and visit Zumobi.com to learn more about Zumobi's award winning ZBi ad technology.
Zumobi is a leading mobile media company that partners with top media brands to publish applications and provide integrated advertising experiences on next-generation smartphones and connected devices. Zumobi's portfolio of applications comprise The Zumobi Network, a premium mobile app network that offers brand advertisers a high-quality, transparent and brand safe environment to showcase their brands and engage with their audiences. Through Zumobi's Brand Integration (ZBi) rich media ad platform, the company enables leading advertisers to truly connect with consumers in a way that is highly immersive, yet organic to the app experience. To learn more, visit www.zumobi.com or follow Zumobi on Twitter @Zumobi.
Richard L. Tso Barokas PR for Zumobi Zumobi@barokas.com (206) 264-8220
John SanGiovanni, co-founder and VP of product design at Zumobi SanGiovanni started experimenting with "native advertising" — pairing apps with major brands — when he founded Zumobi half a dozen years ago.
He has worked with Chevy, American Express, NBC News, and more to create immersive ad experiences that are user-friendly and experiment with interface design.
A visual guide to monthly relevant themes for engaging consumers via mobile advertising.
As early innovators, Zumobi has gained unparalleled industry experience that allows us to skillfully build, execute and optimize mobile campaigns that drive outstanding results. Mobile is our forte and we are pleased to share our wealth of knowledge including when, where and how to spend your dollars most effectively. Click on the graphic below to see full info-graphic!
Do you know you have a mobile problem? Because if you’re a traditional print or Web publisher, you likely have a mobile problem -- whether you realize it or not.
Most of the big digital players have already seen mobile become a significant part of monthly audience. In a September 2012 Media Metrix Multi-Platform report, top-ranked Google showed a mobile audience 58 percent as large as its desktop population. For commerce leader Amazon, mobile visitors were 55 percent of desktop. And music site Pandora already has a mobile majority, with an audience size double that of desktop.
The problem for publishers, even if you are among the crowd generating all those mobile pageviews, is that advertiser appetite is not keeping pace. According to analysis from Magna Global (a unit of IPG), although it grew by 53 percent last year, mobile ad spend still commands just 1.3 percent of total ad revenue and 6 percent of digital advertising.
The result of high mobile publisher volumes and low advertiser adoption? A glut of undifferentiated inventory resulting in low CPMs.
Totally depressing? Not really.
Mobile advertising benefits from a unique connection with the consumer -- it reaches them at moments that were previously off-limits to dynamic advertising, whether that’s at a kid's Little League game, boarding an airplane or standing in the checkout line. Click-through rates and engagement outshine Web advertising metrics. And advertisers will, soon enough, follow the consumer to mobile in greater numbers.
On the flip side, publishers that take advantage of the unique characteristics of mobile media -- in both the consumer experiences and integrated advertising opportunities -- are already attracting ad dollars (and at competitive or print-level CPMs). Mobile media’s rapid consumer adoption has clearly left many publishers and advertisers far behind, still focused on TV and print and the classic digital display of the 90s. It's not too late to catch up, however, and draft on the lessons learned so far.
For publishers, here are some of the guiding principles to follow when going mobile:
Leverage the unique capabilities of the mobile device and operating system. Tailor the app experience with mobile content consumption in mind. Make it easy to share your content socially, since most readers will be on a device already signed in to Facebook or Twitter. Take advantage of camera and location functionality. If you have travel content, don’t just encourage users to comment, build in the utility to enable uploading a picture from the camera roll or take a picture immediately and add to an article. Most importantly, align your advertising experiences to the app feature set: social, sharable and with exportable utility.
Map content to consumer intent. Remember used-car listings in your local paper? (Well, maybe not, depending on how old you are.) That teaser print listing started a chain of inefficient tasks, from calling for more information to getting directions, to somehow figuring out a fair price for the vehicle. On a mobile device, that same car listing today is immediately actionable, from researching pricing info to finding it on a dealer lot and placing a quick call to confirm availability. Standout content experiences in mobile don’t stop at the first step. For instance, take how-to articles and enhance them with list functions that are easily exportable, such as developing an "add to shopping list" feature for recipe content.
Help your advertisers make the leap into mobile goodness. Many advertisers are not fully prepared to take advantage of creative opportunities on mobile. They may not understand what’s possible in your app, or with mobile generally. And the lack (until recently) of ad functionality standards has made some agencies wary of the resources required to effectively execute a mobile campaign at scale. Be ready and willing to provide creative support to take standard online campaigns native on the mobile device -- especially if you offer unique ad sizes, functionality or integration.
Think beyond the standards. The mobile industry, through the IAB, has spent the last two years shaping a framework for mobile advertising functionality -- now known as MRAID, for Mobile Rich-Media Ad Interface Definitions. MRAID is basically programmer guidance that ensures an ad unit can execute advanced functionality (such as expanding in size or accessing device features) in a consistent way across publishers. It’s an important milestone for the industry and you should ensure that your apps comply with MRAID guidelines. But don’t stop there. Soon enough, every publisher’s apps will be MRAID compatible, and then where’s your differentiator? Leverage distinctive characteristics of your app or audience through organic ad units, tailored to the app and content experience. (But see point #3 above, and be prepared to build the experience for your best advertisers.)
Go big. And long. Resist the urge to trim your content experience; small screen doesn’t mean small content. It’s counterintuitive, but mobile consumers often have more time to spend with your content than their Web counterparts. Long-form content, video clips and episodes, deep photo galleries all have a place in a mobile experience. And that holds true for advertisers as well -- mobile is a great storefront to distribute the content you’ve already diligently created for “earned” media placements. And it will be consumed on a device that’s the birthplace of viral media.
Magna Global estimates that within five years, mobile will represent more than 20 percent of U.S. media consumption. The players then will likely be the publishers who are creating compelling, differentiated mobile experiences today.
Late last year, yet another industry buzzword emerged: “Native Advertising.” The term has received a lot of media attention and excitement from brands, rich-media companies and publishers alike, and after cutting through the hype, one question still remains: What does it actually mean?
At the basic level, native ads are paid experiences that are complementary to the platform and content in which they are presented. While examples include Sponsored Stories on Facebook or Sponsored Tweets on Twitter, this doesn’t quite do the term justice. Truly native advertising takes things one step further, referring to seamlessly integrating brands into the medium, so much so that the consumer gets more value from the advertising as part of a greater content consumption experience. As Peter Kafka wrote in a recent article, native advertising is about “selling stuff that people want to look at.” This is key to get people to start thinking about brands, without making the ad blatant or disruptive. This can happen on all media from broadcast to digital, print to mobile, using technologies and platforms that engage with native in mind.
With months of speculation, commentary and controversy behind us, it is time to set the record straight. We need not only to reach a consensus about what native actually means, but also strive to help the advertising industry harness the power of this concept to develop compelling experiences that are organic to the content.
If I had it my way, we would only refer to an ad as native if it includes the following: --The ad is a holistic brand experience specific to the content or medium. --It is seamless and non-invasive. --The content of the ad is contextually relevant. --It is flexible but adheres to the characteristics of the device or screen.
Essentially unexplored, mobile is the next great ad frontier and is where native advertising starts getting really exciting. While most mediums have had years to develop the art of advertising, mobile is still in its infancy. With challenges including small screen size and device/platform fragmentation, there are certainly some hurdles to overcome in order to move beyond the banner and engage with consumers. But mobile devices have quickly become a lifeline for people everywhere — and tapping into the true power of native advertising will be essential to the success of brands from this point on.
There are huge opportunities on mobile to harness that consumer lifeline. Many smartphone users store their lives in their phones. From calendars to social profiles, contacts to photos, brands have the opportunity to add value in the user’s life in real-time through these features, that consumers are actually interacting with. And native ads provide the best platform to leverage these capabilities.
Some of this can be accomplished by pure utility: Creating a branded recipe as part of a cooking app, and enabling consumers to save an ingredient shopping list on their home screen or to easily locate a retailer. But native advertising can also be used to extend the consumer’s focused interest onto a brand.
As an example of a company that has done native advertising justice, Chevrolet recently partnered with Motor Trend to run an extensive, six-part article series — featuring the tech innovation that Chevy is bringing to its vehicles — and was able to place it alongside the Motor Trend news and features that readers are looking for with the Motor Trend app. Chevy was able to offer readers the ability to pin that content/ad experience to their mobile home screens so that they could review it later. By showcasing a seamless app-within-an-app experience and offering a mobile ad that doesn’t bounce you out of the app, as an industry, we just might be able to create advertisements that engage consumers instead of distract them. As a business model, the native environment will also lead to greater engagement and result in more conversions because consumers are impressed and influenced by a truly integrated experience.
Personally, I prefer the term “organic” to “native” because what brands need is a way to offer advertising that is ingrained and complementary to the content consumption experience, and is novel and sophisticated. The mobile platform is ideal for creating a seamless and organic ad experience. When you’re on a desktop computer, you can be doing many other things at once such as looking at various places on a homepage or website. Mobile is different. If you click on a mobile video or engage with a brand experience, you are essentially locked into that choice. Since the eyeballs are there, why not capitalize on that by providing a deeper, more immersive experience for the user. Instead of spending time trying to divert attention (like with most forms of digital advertising), since they already have it with mobile, brands should leverage it to their advantage by going deeper.
Lastly, as an industry, we need to focus more on the overall user experience and less on the ad units themselves because the native technologies have advanced the conversation beyond the typical 320×50 mobile banner ad. The key is to engage the user with depth and to provide multiple, comfortable ways for the user to engage with the brand, not just with a rich media banner that goes away after a few seconds. We have found that if you take this approach, the user will indeed engage deeply, even with long-form content like videos.
Whether you prefer the term “native ads” or “organic brand experiences,” the concept is really about providing consumers with meaningful content when and where they want to consume it.
-Ken Willner is the CEO of Zumobi and has been actively involved in the development of mobile as a media platform since 2002.
When it comes to content marketing the prevailing thought among marketers is that the longer the content the less likely it will be used on a mobile device. The thought being that people will not engage with long form content marketing on a mobile device thus that type of content is best served on a PC.
Well based on the results of a recent joint campaign between Chevy and mobile media company Zumobi, marketers may want to rethink long form content marketing and its potential use on mobile devices.
As part of the Chevrolet Technology Series campaign, the idea was to take a six-part print and digital advertorial series and transform it into a mobile experience that would run across Motor Trend’s print magazine and website, as well apps for iOS and Android devices.
The idea to repurpose existing content across other channel is nothing new of course but the idea of taking print and digital content and conveying that same content in a mobile format is unconventional to say the least.
For Carolin Probst-Iyer, manager digital consumer of engagement at General Motor’s Chevrolet Division this was unchartered waters but just another example of Chevy’s commitment to innovation when it comes to content marketing.
“Chevrolet is always looking for new ways to provide content to consumers,” she said. “By repurposing our content from print and digital we were able to create a new experience for consumers and maintain a cohesive brand identity across mediums.”
She added that “this is the first time that Chevrolet has taken such rich content and provided a way for consumers to interact with this type of material on their mobile device.”
Rise To The Challenge
Probst-Iyer made the challenge quite clear to the folks at Zumobi. “We presented Zumobi with a challenge to preserve the creative elements of our print and online campaign to create a cohesive brand identity across mediums,” she said. “And yet build a unique experience that addresses the specific usability and content aspects for mobile.”
For his part, Zumobi CEO Ken Willner was more than ready.
“We viewed this campaign as an opportunity to leverage our Zumobi Brand Integration (ZBi) platform and utilize the technology that we have developed in order to bring the Chevrolet Technology Series brand experience to mobile,” he said.
But he said the biggest task was to take content that was created for one medium and use that came content in another medium without losing any of its value.
“The primary challenge we faced was in how to translate this long-form content experience which was originally designed for print, to mobile devices,” said Willner.
The Results Are In
I would say that based on the results below the challenge was not only met, it was exceeded and then some.
-37% overall mobile engagement rate, meaning that more than one-third of people interacted with the Chevrolet ZBi campaign Click-Through Rates (CTR) as high as 11.2% for the ZBi expandable Paso Doble ad units -6.8% of users saved the integrated content experience to their home screen via the ZBi Footprint feature, creating a leave-behind app on their mobile device -People spent as high as 6.4 minutes interacting with the Chevrolet ZBi ads -Overall the campaign yielded engagement stats three times the industry benchmark of 12.8% for mobile rich-media ads as reported by Mobile Marketer and more than thirteen times the average CTR of standard mobile banners.
With all this going for it, you would think marketers across the land would be chomping at the proverbial bit to try this themselves for their clients.
According to Willner it’s not that marketers don’t see the future re: mobile marketing but that using mobile in this way is not second nature the way other mediums are. “While brands and agencies understand the huge opportunity offered by native advertising and branded content, it’s not intuitive that the mobile can actually be a great medium to drive this level of user engagement,” he said.
As for what the future holds for marketers, brands, advertisers and so on, Willner says it’s bright.
“Now more than ever, there is an incredible opportunity to deliver on the promise of ‘brand as publisher in mobile advertising,” he remarked. “The appetite among marketers for more native, content-centric brand experiences is growing rapidly and the timing is right for the mobile marketing industry to embrace this movement.”
It’s A Mobile World Kids
I know that’s not breaking news but what are you, as a marketer, advertiser, brand manager and on and on doing to engage your audience where they are spending an increasing amount of their time at/on, AKA their mobile device?
Content is king - a popular phrase proven repeatedly.
In the case of mobile media company, Zumobi, content was the leading catalyst for impressive results out of a recent mobile initiative for the Chevrolet Technology Series campaign. The promotion was a content advertising experience that ran across Motor Trend's print magazine, website, iOS and Android Apps.
"We presented Zumobi with a challenge to preserve the creative elements of our print and online campaign to create a cohesive brand identity across mediums and yet build a unique experience that addresses the specific usability and content aspects for mobile," said Carolin Probst-Iyer, manager digital consumer of engagement at General Motor's Chevrolet Division. "They far exceeded our expectations on mobile. The results of a 37 percent engagement rate are a testament to the success of this campaign and the ZBi platform."
Zumobi Co-Founder and Vice President of Product Design John SanGiovanni credits three different reasons for the success, including the aforementioned content.
"This campaign was really about trying to engage the user with content and teach the user about their manufacturing, so their goal was specific: engagement with the site," said SanGiovanni. "Chevrolet wanted a car enthusiast to really spend real time and watch the long-form videos and engage with other excellent content."
And engage they did. People spent as high as 6.4 minutes interacting with the Chevrolet ZBi ads and a low 4 percent bounce rate. SanGiovanni counts the actual integration of the experience as the second reason for the campaign's achievements. Chevy's advertisements weren't presented as an in-app banner. Instead, the ad displayed like a new content channel that captured the attention of the user and subtly integrated brand messaging.
The third thing that affected Chevy and Zumobi's success was the time-release of new chapters of content. The additional content gave users a good reason to use Zumobi's Footprint feature, which creates a leave-behind app on their mobile device home screen, so they can revisit the content at any time. Once saved, the companies could still get valuable analytics from the users, such as session times, the number of people who saved it on their home screen and so on. Nearly 7 percent of users saved the integrated content experience to their home screen using this feature.
It should also be noted, that Chevy's advertising agency, Detroit-based Commonwealth, played an integral role in this campaign.
Zumobi has released its results for the mobile component of a four-month branded content campaign. The company tracked a 37 percent engagement rate for the mobile initiative of the Chevrolet Technology Series campaign that ran across Motor Trend’s print magazine and website, as well apps for iOS and Android devices. (The mobile campaign did not include tablets.)
The company says this shows longer-form content can work on mobile screens.
"We were thinking that a smaller device equals shorter content. But a lot of these types of campaigns perform better with long-form content on mobile versus desktop. Users who are trapped at a bus stop or doctor's office, they're an engaged audience," says John SanGiovanni, co-founder and vice president of product design for Zumobi.
The Chevy campaign was comprised of a six-part print and digital advertorial series that was released in chapters from July through October 2012. Article topics ranged from design to the technology behind the Chevrolet Volt power train. Zumobi worked with Chevrolet, Source Interlink Media, Motor Trend’s parent company, and Commonwealth, a Detroit-based agency that's a joint venture between Goodby, Silverstein and McCann-Erickson.
The mobile app opened with a Chevrolet-branded loading screen and a rich-media expandable banner. It included a dashboard-like landing site within the app featuring custom content modules for each of the six brand chapters.
Zumobi partners with media brands to publish applications with integrated advertising. It also operates a premium mobile app network that lets brand advertisers buy campaigns on apps. SanGiovanni said one of the biggest challenges with mobile campaigns is that the agency often creates the mobile assets last, and often just repurposes a few screen shots. "Users may use the app several times a week," he says. "If they keep seeing the same banner over and over again, fatigue is incredibly high and clickthroughs are low. So we synchronized the chapters to new ad units."
The ZBi platform also includes a footprint feature that lets people save an ad and content module to the home screen so they can revisit it later.
Zumobi's business model is to create and publish branded apps for top-tier media companies in exchange for the ad revenue. SanGiovanni says, "We are incentivized to make these great, long-term apps instead of just firing them off into the wild."
A recent Chevrolet mobile advertising campaign that ran within the Motor Trend application had a 37 percent engagement rate, pointing to how mobile can help build brands.
Chevrolet worked with mobile media company Zumobi to translate a six-part print advertorial for mobile and integrate the content inside the Motor Trend iPhone and Android apps. The results were strong across a variety of metrics, including an 11.2 percent click-through rate.
“One of the things that has been sorely missing on mobile advertising is a real respect for user experience,” said John SanGiovanni, vice president of product design at Zumobi, Seattle. “Users of iPhones and Android phones have gotten good at ignoring the banner ad at the bottom of the screen.
“What we really want to do is take the same attention to detail that goes into designing a high-end app and apply to that brand placement,” he said. “The goal is making the brand a content publisher."
App within an app The Chevrolet Technology Series campaign also ran across Motor Trend’s print magazine and Web site, in addition to mobile.
On mobile, it featured video and long-form content offering a view into how the Chevrolet team pioneers engineering advancements.
The goal was to create a campaign that preserved the creative elements from print and online and take it to another level by incorporating mobile into the mix. This helped Chevrolet create a cohesive brand identity, while also building a unique experience addressing the usability and content aspects for mobile.
Users of the Motor Trend app saw a Chevrolet branded loading screen and a rich media expandable banner ad encouraging them to click to see the exclusive editorial content.
Once users clicked to see the content, they were presented with an immersive app-within-an-app experience featuring custom content modules for each of six experiences that were delivered in a staggered fashion between July and October last year. The Chevy experience also included in-app navigation so users could check out all the past content that had already been unlocked.
The next chapter Users could save the content to their home screen, where it appeared as an app.
“The ability to save to your home screen is the mobile equivalent of tearing a special section out of the magazine,” Mr. SanGiovanni said.
Results include click-through rates as high as 11.2 percent for the expandable ad unit.
Additionally, users spent as much as 6.4 minutes interacting with the ads and 6.8 percent of users saved the integrated content experience to their home screen.
“The users for these lifestyle or enthusiast apps will launch the app once a day or at least a few times a week,” said Mr. SanGiovanni. “So a typical sponsorship buy is a drag because the consumer gets tremendous fatigue over the course of a couple of months.
“With this campaign, we were actually able to get really shockingly high engagement rates because we kept introducing new chapters of content inside the app, each one of them had representative video and long form content,” he said.
The New York Times featured our amazing Ski And Snow Report app in their January 16th Personal Tech section. Here's what they had to say:
The free iOS Ski and Snow Report app from Zumobi is more complex, letting you arrange weather data for several resorts on a summary page. Tapping on a resort’s icon takes you to more details, like a five-day weather forecast and resort webcams (if there are any) so you can judge conditions for yourself. The neat bit about this app is it can send you alerts when your favorite resorts get fresh snow.
With all the critical snow and weather data you need to get the jump on the dumps at your favorite resorts, Zumobi Ski and Snow Report is a complete resource for snow sports enthusiasts. Users add their favorite ski and snowboard destinations to get up to the minute snow and weather notifications delivered live. Resort detail pages provides snow depth data including base and top, a five day forecast, instant access to Twitter feeds, live webcams, trail and lift maps, and more so you do not get left out in the cold.
Just in time for International CES 2013, Zumobi's John SanGiovanni revisits his talk at the Seattle Interactive Conference 2012 in the pages of VentureBeat, speaking on the essential nature of active engagement in advertising, all-too-often seen as a passive, one-way proposition.
Not only must the app itself be handcrafted to surprise and delight the user, but integrated advertising units must do the same.
At Zumobi every day we ask ourselves "How much more can we do?", in app design, in telling advertisers' stories, in growing the scope and performance of our award-winning ZBi mobile ad platform. The flow of launches and announcements of new, advanced mobile phones and tablets at CES only extends the horizon for us. Read John's piece here, then visit Zumobi.com to see how we put it all together.
Zumobi's TODAY Show app gets a laudatory shout-out in MobileMarketer's profile of the M&M & Dove holiday mobile campaigns.
Users who click through are able to view a short video or save candy-themed recipes straight to their mobile desktop.
To get some perspective on the campaign MobileMarketer spoke with Marci Troutman, CEO of SiteMinis, who had this to say about the importance of participation in the mobile landscape for advertisers:
"As long as CPGs like Mars are utilizing mobile the right way to drive consumer engagement there is a very huge win in mobile this holiday season. With the number of mobile devices and tablets on the market this holiday season, CPGs need to be in the game of mobile in order to keep up with their consumers. Additionally with readers accessing the mobile Internet there is another large wave of mobile access that cannot be avoided."
It's no surprise to us M&M MARS chose to advertise with Zumobi. No mobile ad platform offers advertisers more opportunities to bring their creative to life than the fast-loading, feature-rich Zumobi ZBi Platform.
Read the rest of the article here.
The news is out: Zumobi landed former TV Guide President & veteran media executive Scott Crystal. In his role as Chief Revenue Officer, Crystal will oversee the monetization of Zumobi’s Brand Integration (ZBi) platform and will lead all revenue generating operations. He sums up his position:
"Zumobi’s had consecutive record years of revenue growth," Crystal wrote in an email to Adweek. "And I see my role as a way to amplify the company’s success moving forward. Building on this momentum, I plan on working across the industry to increase awareness of their robust portfolio of innovative advertising solutions and custom features."
Click here to read the rest of the article at AdWeek.
Zumobi's Field & Stream app was featured in Mobile Marketer's article about Dodge RAM Trucks' multi-channel approach to sponsorship. With Zumobi's award-winning ZBi platform hard-wired into the app, sponsorship of Field & Stream allowed Dodge to present a thorough, innovative ad experience to a prime truck-buying audience. Zumobi's VP/Marketing Marla Schimke had this to say:
“The Field & Stream campaign with Ram is a great example of taking a comprehensive approach that’s based on community interaction across multiple platforms. We understand the importance of connecting brands with their audience in a native and organic way that is tailored to how consumers are naturally interacting with content and are pleased with the engagement Ram is seeing from the mobile ad campaign.”
The level of positive audience engagement advertisers can develop on ZBi simply isn't possible on less-advanced ad platforms. No less-advanced ad platform could have brought Dodge RAM's Deer Camp creative concept to life the way ZBi can, and did.
“To drive a compelling native experience on mobile for the RAM brand, we knew that incorporating a rich video experience would prove critical to connecting with the audience within the Field & Stream app...By bringing a more holistic rich media approach with the ZBi platform, we are addressing a major pain point for publishers while providing advertisers with innovative brand experiences that are native to the experience.”
Have you ever pondered the spiritual connection between Ninja Turtles, mobile advertising, and apps? You probably are now. Zumobi's Co-founder and VP of Product, John SanGiovanni will answer this question as he chronicles the product journey that led to the award winning Zumobi Brand Integration (ZBi) rich media ad platform and provides insights on what makes a successful mobile campaign. Click here to watch on Vimeo.
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It may still feel like summer in some places, but here at Zumobi our fall tour is already in full swing. Come say ‘hello’ to our executive team as they travel across the country to attend and speak at some of the most popular mobile marketing events across the industry.
Zumobi kicked it off this week in New York at Mobile Marketer’s Summit on Thursday, September 13. Our CEO, Ken Willner, spoke alongside NBC News Digital’s Director of Product Management and Marketing, Parag Vaish, to help “set the pace for mobile publishers in an era of media fragmentation.” As a leader in the mobile space since 2006, we recognize the importance of innovation and the value in not just keeping the pace but setting the pace.
Next, catch up with our very own Mobile Marketer “Woman to Watch,” Patricia Clark, as the VP of Sales and Sponsorships represents Zumobi as a “Mobile Marketing & Advertising Trend Setter” at Intelligent Local Search 2012 in Philadelphia September 27th and 28th.
Patricia will then join Zumobi’s CEO, Ken Willner, and VP of Marketing, Marla Schimke, and new VP of Publisher Operations, Jon Flinn to attend Advertising Week New York October 1st – 5th. Interested in chatting with Zumobi while we’re in town? Ken, Marla, John and Patricia will be attending the most coveted mobile events throughout the week while rubbing elbows with fellow visionaries in the mobile space. Make sure and register for OMMA Mobile on 10/1 to catch our American Express partners as they give exclusive insight into how they utilized the Zumobi Brand Integration (ZBi) platform to connect with mobile consumers in meaningful, memorable, new ways.
Take a detour and swing by Austin, Tex. October 14th - 17th for the iMedia Breakthrough Summit to “keep pace with the mobile consumer” and watch as Patricia turns the spotlight on how mobile is shaping the future of brand campaigns.
Heading back to the west coast, Zumobi’s CEO, Ken Willner, will be starring in the entertainment industry’s premier digital event, Digital Hollywood, from October 15th – 18th. Held in Marina del Rey, Calif., the event brings together top executives from across the film, television, music, and technology industries. Don’t miss the opportunity to register for the Tablet and Smartphone Summit where Ken will speak on the “iPad, Table, Smartphone: the Premium Advertising Platform” panel.
It’ll be a busy month as Zumobi’s Co-Founder and VP of Design, John SanGiovanni, heads to Santa Clara, Calif. to help App Conference attendees “Cross the Chasm” October 18th and 19th. Check out John’s panel as they discuss how today’s apps are evolving the mobile experience for brands of all sizes.
Can’t follow the Zumobi team across the country? Not to worry – we’ve saved the best for last. Zumobi is sponsoring the second annual Seattle Interactive Conference held in Seattle’s very own back yard October 29th and 30th. Stop by Zumobi’s Pacific Northwest themed Mobile Lodge designed by our friend, Matthew Parker, and make sure not to miss John speak among Seattle’s most notable and innovative figures. Hint: Ninja Turtles may or may not be involved.
"Back-to-School" means time to say farewell to the longer days and re-organize your life accordingly. Could you use some assistance easing that seasonal transition? Melissa Chapman, NYC mommy skilled bloggess recommends Zumobi's Relish Daily Dish app as a valuable tool to help with this challenge.
Check out Melissa's clip that aired on the WPIX 11 Morning News showcasing the rich content, efficient search methodology, and sophisticated grocery list functions of Zumobi's Daily Dish app. Say hello to Autumn and this savvy time saving tool! Check out the clip here at WPIX.
What does it mean to be named one of Seattle Business Magazine’s 100 Best Companies? To us, it means more than you think.
Over the years Zumobi has seen tremendous growth. From our early startup days with a handful of employees, to now having multiple offices and powering the mobile industry’s premier advertising experiences, at Zumobi we have seen our fair share of triumphs and setbacks.
One thing we always stay true to is our dedication to our staff. Whether it’s Chicken Tuesdays, Inspiration Fridays or our sweet new digs we want to provide our employees a place they want to come back to day after day. After all, without them we wouldn’t be anything.
So this award goes to our wonderful and dedicated employees -- past present and future!
It's a natural partnership. Both businesses believe in the untapped potential of mobile advertising: that the golden opportunity presented by the technology to fully engage mobile users is squandered on the old display ad paradigm. American Express identified in Zumobi's ZBi platform the only mobile ad platform capable of delivering the breakthrough performance & interactivity their creative vision demanded.
However, while the market is catapulting forward, American Express believes the content and quality of ads simply is not keeping pace.
So they are partnering with Zumobi who, as per their website “power the very best mobile apps and advertising experiences through an array of advanced platforms for media companies.” Their goal is to shakeup the mobile ad norm with their mobile campaign which is part of their overall Membership Effect Campaign that launched earlier this year.
The campaign, which is being officially launched today, will create rich experiences for smartphone users personalized to their interests and spending habits plus combine video, user generated content, and social media on smartphones. The campaign will also create a tailored timeline of images customized to each user. Based on responses to a set of interactive prompts in the experience, users can also create a personalized panorama that is tailored to their interests in shopping, dining, electronics or travel.
"Louis Paskalis, Vice President of Global Media, Content Development and Mobile Marketing, American Express: “We are thrilled to be tapping into Zumobi’s incredible creativity and expertise in developing innovative mobile ads that make full use of smartphones’ native capabilities across their Brand Integration (ZBi) ad platform. They are enabling us to truly bring The Membership Effect campaign to life by creating a highly interactive and personalized brand experience for Cardmembers.”
Read the rest of this article here.
Featured at GigaOM, Zumobi co-founder John SanGiovanni reflects on the shifting importance of hardware platforms in personal computing.
"No one disputes the transformative change that desktop and mobile computing platforms have had on human communication in recent years. While the hierarchy of these devices is continuously evolving, phones are increasingly replacing desktops and laptops as the primary computing device in our digital lifestyle. Google found that more people have a mobile internet-capable device than a PC or laptop in five key markets (U.S., UK, Germany, France and Japan). In the U.S., this figure is eight percent greater.
"We’re also seeing growth in a complementary concept — let’s call it Nomadic Computing 2.0. In this model, the phone itself plays a central role in powering computing beyond its own small form factor. As the vice president of product design for the mobile media company Zumobi, I’ve noticed an interesting trend in the next generation of mobile user experiences. Increasingly, the functions and user interface scenarios that were once the purview of our other devices (PCs, laptops, TVs) are being powered directly by the computing hardware and software within our phones."
Read the rest here at GigaOM.
As the awards season kicks off this year, we wanted to take a moment to thank The Webby Awards for naming our MSNBC.com app as an honoree for best news app on handheld devices. The official honoree distinction is awarded to the top 15% of all entries that exhibit remarkable achievement to the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS). The judging panel, comprised of web industry experts, including media mogul Arianna Huffington, Skype CEO Tony Bates, and Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom, selected our MSNBC.com app among the best from the nearly 10,000 entries this year. We’re flattered to receive this recognition from the IADAS, and thank our partners at MSNBC.com for their commitment to and support for this app. Zumobi is pleased and humbled to be noticed among internet and media elites for its work and leadership within the mobile industry.
Laurie Sullivan at Media Post gives readers an overview of Zumobi's exciting new ad platform:
The ZBi platform, which integrates into the mobile or device app, eliminates the traditional advertising ad units that typically confine the image within a box. It also allows brands to change the ad on the fly. The placement makes it look as if creative directors designed the page around the ad, integrating the creative piece with other text and images. Popular Science, Corning Glass, Ford, Mercedes, Sprint, Bank of America, Disney and Xbox are among the brands that have been quietly rolling out apps integrated with the service.
Click here to read the rest of the article at MediaPost.
According to Willner, the platform allows for what he called “participatory advertising” via its incorporation into social media. By providing branded content and experiences to which users can add their own content (and, ideally, share with their networks), there’s a “living HTML experience you can come back to.”
Click here to read the rest of the story.
Zumobi has released its long-awaited Kindle-optimized version of MSNBC.com: our flagship news app. Now Kindle Fire users can keep up with the daily events in their lives via MSNBC.com's award-winning journalists and news photographers.
Click here to visit the MSNBC.com download page at the Amazon App Store for Android!
SEATTLE, WA – February 13, 2012 – Zumobi, a leading mobile media company, today announced the launch of the CELEBRITY PARADE app for iPhone. Published in partnership with PARADE magazine, the most widely read magazine in America, the app was designed with the busy connected consumer in mind. It organizes all the latest celebrity news in an elegant and easy-to-read format that enables users to connect with the content that they find the most relevant and entertaining, from photos and interviews to breaking news. Additionally, through new and innovative social media integration, app users can challenge their Facebook and Twitter friends to daily pop culture quizzes. “Every Sunday, our 65 million readers turn to PARADE for news-making celebrity interviews, “ says Maggie Murphy, PARADE’s editorial director. “This is a way for those dedicated followers of popular culture to keep up with the news on the go, and even better---to test their celebrity knowledge with an irresistible daily quiz, wherever they are.”
The CELEBRITY PARADE app offers daily updated news content ranging from entertainment gossip, addictive pop culture quizzes, photo galleries of top celebrities, interviews, and the popular “Personality Parade” weekly column. In addition to extending the publication’s massive reach, it offers advertisers a compelling reason to include mobile in their existing print and online advertising spend.
“We are excited to partner with Parade to help them extend their incredible brand reach and reader relationships to mobile apps.” said Ken Willner, CEO at Zumobi. “Our experience publishing leading media apps and enabling immersive and integrated brand experiences for advertisers is a great fit with the outstanding editorial quality and brand power of Parade."
The CELEBRITY PARADE app on iOS offers compelling sponsorship opportunities through Zumobi’s rich media advertising platform. This platform offering creates the ideal environment for premium advertisers who are seeking exclusivity, metrics transparency and brand safety.
CELEBRITY PARADE is free to consumers and is currently in the Apple App Store. To download the app for iPhone, click here.
Zumobi is a leading mobile media company that partners with top media properties to publish applications and provide unique mobile advertising experiences for next-generation smartphones and tablets. Zumobi's portfolio of mobile applications comprises The Zumobi Network. This premium mobile app network offers brands rich media advertising experiences and sponsorships with primary access in top media apps like MSNBC, Today Show, Sporting News Pro Football, PopSci.com, MOTOR TREND News and many more. For more information, go to www.zumobi.com. Follow Zumobi on Twitter @Zumobi.
PARADE, the most widely read magazine in America, has a circulation of 33 million through its distribution in more than 600 of the nation’s finest newspapers, and a readership of 65 million each week. Its content is carried on 500 newspaper websites---the single most-trusted and most-visited source of local news and information---and reaches an online audience of 50 million. For more information, go to www.parade.com. Follow PARADE on Twitter @ParadeMagazine.
Dove Chocolate is running a great Valentine's Day-themed feature in Zumobi's TODAY SHOW app, including several delectable recipes featuring Dove Chocolate.
In this feature Lauren Johnson @ Mobile Marketer breaks down the campaign: the strategy, the creative, and the execution:
"Dove’s branding inside the app is a good example of how a company can marry its brand and products to content...For a consumer packaged goods company, mobile is a natural place to take a brand to a new level with a piece of extra content."
Read the rest of this article here.
Bob Tedeschi of the New York Times includes Zumobi's slick, elegant 'Dwell' app in his list of Home Improvement apps in the Jan. 19 edition:
...Dwell (free on Apple and Android) is another good app that offers modern design ideas, but with videos and text in addition to photos. It is designed for smaller devices only, but even stretched onto the iPad’s bigger screen, the app was useful...
Read the rest of the article here.
Remember the time when cell phones didn’t exist? Or when car phones were the size of fax machines or laser printers? How about when the only purpose a mobile phone served was to make and receive calls or play snake? The industry has come a long way from the first adoption of mobile. Mobile hasn’t just revolutionized a communication industry; it’s revolutionizing the advertising industry as well. In fact, Gartner predicts that mobile advertising will be a $20.6 billion market by 2015.
As the majority of our customers are spending time glued to their handheld devices, we continually have to find new and exciting ways to engage with them. Long gone are the times when effective marketing simply included billboards, print ads, banners and TV spots. In the new era of mobility, brands have to find alternate ways to communicate, connect with and engage customers.
We all know that brand loyalty is emotional. Consumers who stick with one brand over another have a connection with that brand. There are distinct rivalries between Coke and Pepsi, McDonalds and Burger King, Nike and Adidas and of course Apple and everyone else. In an increasingly connected world, how do brands sufficiently and emotionally engage with consumers?
Read the rest at iMedia Connection.