14 Trends in Mobile: Part 2

Forecasting 14 Mobile Advertising Trends Before They Take Over the World: Part 2

by | Jun 11, 2015

I’m back, your most esteemed mobile advertising weatherman returns for Part 2 of Forecasting 14 Mobile Advertising Trends Before They Take Over the World.

You can find Part 1 here.

The next batch of 7 await you below, complete with my commentary.


8. Ads Will be Engaging

People really hate being sold to. And nowadays, they can see a sales pitch coming a mile away.

This might be a hard pill to swallow, considering how much of the advertising industry is predicated on creating messaging that “sells.”

What don’t people hate? Interactivity. Entertainment. Games. Most of all? A sense of ownership and control.

Luckily, ads exist that offer such benefits.

Sorry banner ad. You’ve been a trusted ally. But your time in the spotlight is nearly over and done with.

The age of rich media is now upon us.

Rich media ads on mobile are your best bet to get the user engagement you’re after.

They drive CTR. They offer a unique, user-friendly experience. Most importantly, they forgo explicitly saying “buy this” in exchange for “come play” or “discover,” thereby tugging at a user’s curiosity by presenting them with the opportunity to control their own experience.

It’s an important distinction, and one that has proved to generate results.

So don’t be surprised when more and more brands request and adopt rich media advertising.

9. People-Based Marketing

Here’s a novel idea: let’s actually market to real people instead of their devices (you know, the humanoid bipeds with the capacity to actually make a purchase).

That’s the notion behind “people-based marketing,” a movement that’s been gaining quite a bit of steam in the past year.

It may seem painstakingly obvious to someone not formally schooled as a marketer (*raises hand*), but people-based marketing apparently represents new ground in the industry – ground necessitated by mobile’s explosion.

As Atlas by Facebook, the original coiner of the term describes, “Rapid mobile adoption has proved disruptive to traditional marketing philosophies that have been set in stone for generations.”

No kidding.

The basic gist is that there will soon be about 10 devices to every person on the planet (check out the first trend in part 1 of this series if you don’t believe it). The easy assumption to make? People are going to be using multiple devices and doing so frequently.

So why not engage with the individual consumers behind their devices? Moving forward, that’s a concept sure to “stick.”

Marketing to people? Whoah. I think they’re on to something…

10. Programmatic Buying: A Land of Opportunity

Shh… hear that? Listen closely. That’s the soft hum of a fully automated ad buying future.

Programmatic advertising.

You’ve heard the phrase.

And by now, you probably know what it means.

Computers buying ads. Software that does the job traditionally left for media buyers and other advertising professionals.

We’ve talked about the pros and cons of programmatic advertising before, and generally speaking, the pros far outweigh the cons.

The IAB has even gone as far as calling programmatic mobile a “land of opportunity.”

So it’s fair to say, programmatic advertising is the future. With mobile advertising taking over the world, programmatic ad buying is poised to harness the tidal waves of consumer data mobile devices generate.

Which makes programmatic and mobile the perfect dance partners.

11. Catering to the People

This isn’t so much a trend as a necessity.

The mobile user experience (UX) has to get better.

Gone are the days where traditional desktop advertising could simply be ported to mobile and smacked with the “OK” stamp.

If you want to grab your consumer’s attention and hold it, ad design must be mobile first.

No more unresponsive static ads that get in the way of a user’s attempt to scroll. No more poorly formatted text that’s too difficult to read.

It’s really simple stuff.

The mobile ad experience should contour to how a user interacts with their mobile device.

Anything less will be unacceptable.

12. Out-of-Home is Mobile

I honestly don’t think we have any clue yet as to how dramatically mobile devices are going to change things.

Take out-of-home advertising for example. You know; billboards, street posters, ads on buses, sign flippers and the like.

Ever thought they’d be considered “mobile advertising?”

And not mobile advertising in the mobile, moving from place to place, not at your home sense.

This is mobile advertising in the data-driven, smartphone powered, conversion-getting like crazy sense.

A few weeks back, we covered an article by Lauren Moores on the topic of out-of-home advertising in our weekly newsletter.

So what’s happened is that some really smart people have figured out that we can use the location data acquired from mobile devices to inform out-of-home media placement.

In other words, that billboard you just saw that was eerily relevant to you?

That could be because you (and people with similar consumer data) have frequented that location often enough to justify the placement of such a billboard.

It’s really pretty cool, if not a tad bit creepy.

Regardless, mobile data used in this capacity is definitely on the rise. Out-of-home is merely one manifestation of it.

13. Mobile E-Commerce

This may surprise you, but nearly half of all e-commerce traffic comes from mobile devices.

Even more surprising?

78% of mobile searches for local business information result in a purchase.

That’s compared to only 61% on a PC or laptop.

The trend is clear.

Consumers are becoming more and more comfortable with browsing and buying products on their mobile devices. It’s often easier and more convenient.

As we speak, specialized mobile ad units are being designed to not only allow for mobile purchase through a “buy” button, but also to highlight local product sales, or direct traffic via GPS functionalities to the nearest store.

It’s a degree of flexibility and creativity that desktop advertising simply can’t offer.

For these reasons, brands will invest heavily in mobile ecommerce, specifically user acquisition and targeting.

14. Bringing it All In-House

Mobile industry fragmentation and the demons it spawns, namely increased costs, questionable transparency, and issues with ad fraud and viewability, continue to wreak havoc.

So it isn’t quite that surprising that more and more brands are attempting to bring ad tech and digital media teams in-house.

While brands acknowledge the potential risk of sacrificed performance, the allure of controlling their own data and reporting is enticing, especially in light of mounting pressure to serve viewable mobile ads.

This is not to say that brands are abandoning their agency partnerships in mass. Often, agencies still play a massive part in the digital strategy discussion and implementation, as highlighted by this State Farm example.

Rather, brands really just want to keep up.

Mobile advertising can be confusing. There’s a lot of issues and technologies to grapple with, and free guides like this one aren’t always readily available.

In-house teams can specialize in such matters, acting as a knowledgeable segue between the brand itself and their agency and ad tech partners.

The success of these in-house ad tech and ad operation teams is still to be determined. But that won’t stop brands from trying them out.


What kind of future do you see for mobile advertising? What trends have we missed? Let me know in the comments section below.