Advertisers are drooling in anticipation of unleashing advertising on mobile phones, but, in general, their approach leaves a lot to be desired. Unsurprisingly, mobile operators are looking to Google for leadership in the space, but it's proceeding with caution, preferring to first figure out what users what from its mobile products and how to improve them, before filling them with ads. Many operators are looking to take the opposite approach, putting the monetization before the creation of a great product that people will want to use. The key to getting people to accept mobile advertising is to offer some value in exchange for it. If all mobile advertising does is intrude and interrupt and annoy people, it won't work. But build it into useful services and applications in a well-thought-out way, and people will be much more receptive to it. The head of one paid-search service says that advertising revenues from paid search could make a significant and immediate impact on operators' bottom lines (though he would, wouldn't he?) -- but when people are still struggling to figure out mobile search, plastering it with ads already is awfully hasty.
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