Advertising Isn't A Mobile Strategy

from the content-comes-first dept

ReadWriteWeb has an article claiming that the way to beat Google is by having a better ad platform (via Matt Asay). It says that "the company that can corner the mobile web ad market is going to be able to go toe-to-toe with Google." This is getting things completely backwards. Google doesn't dominate the search engine market because it has the best advertising platform. It dominates the advertising market because it has the best search platform. Other companies, such as AOL, that have seen themselves as an advertising company first and a content/applications company second have gone nowhere. This is especially true because the best advertising platforms are tightly integrated with their associated applications. One of the reasons Google's search advertising is so lucrative is that Google figured out how to make its ads highly relevant to users' search terms. This had two benefits. It increased click-through rates, obviously, but more importantly, it made the ads more useful -- and therefore less annoying -- to users. The same principle applies to the mobile space. Mobile advertising will only work if companies figure out how to make the overall user experience positive so that the ads don't scare users away. The way to do that is not to focus on building the best possible mobile ad platform, but rather to build the best possible mobile services, and worry about monetizing them after they've built up a significant user base.

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Filed Under: advertising, business models, platforms, strategy


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  • identicon
    Ethan Bauley, 23 May 2008 @ 8:03am

    RWW is slipping!

    Agreed...there's been a lot of mediocre thoughts coming through RWW recently.

    I'm still a fan, but...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Patricia Turner, 24 May 2008 @ 8:46pm

    Mobile Advertising

    We tried a service here in Ohio with a company called Mobile Posse. The price to use the service was significantly higher than internet advertising. We didn't see any results, in fact, it was a waste of money.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Brian Hayes, 25 May 2008 @ 2:37pm

    Good writing

    This post, Timothy, is a top example of concise points in clear writing. Why, it's darn near got rhythm!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    The Basic Investor, 25 May 2008 @ 3:42pm

    Googles Search Engine

    I have to truly wonder why Google's search engine is referred to as a "superior search engine" when the only thing it is superior for is generating thousands of irrelevant references that merely generate pages Google can attach ads to.

    If one wants a better search engine then one simply needs to take a look at Yahoo. Yahoo's context sensitive search engine by far produces superior results to Google.

    That is unless you like being "spammed" by page after page of ads while futilely searching for something that has at least some relation to what you are searching for.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Sebastien Giuge, 26 May 2008 @ 1:11am

    So right. User experience first, next comes the money.
    However, Google had the chance to grow in a quiet homogeneous environment (OS, browsers). "Make the overall user experience positive" is quite a case in such a complex/atomised environment as mobile one.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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