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Monday, 13 January 2014 00:00

Mobile retargeting

At the outset, I have a question to ask advertisers. How much of your marketing budget do you spend in driving app downloads? And, how much of it is driven towards engaging with those who already have the app?

The fact is that current mobile advertising technology vendors are focused on driving app downloads for marketers. There is very little or no focus on re-engaging with users who have already downloaded and used the advertiser’s mobile app. Hence, most hard-earned app downloads result in a one-time usage at best and in the eventual uninstalling of the app.

The current mobile retargeting scenario

The diagram below illustrates the various challenges in effectively re-engaging with the existing mobile web or app user base:

Android Mobile Web: Android mobile web users can be targeted using cookies and messaged. But usually the inventory pool available on Android mobile that can support cookie based targeting is very limited. Most publishers do not support cookie based buying on their Android mobile web inventory as user based targeting is a new frontier in mobile ad-tech. Also in most geos, 50% of the mobile inventory is inside apps and cookie based targeting is not possible on this in-app inventory

iOS Mobile Web: 98% of the iOS users use Safari browser for accessing mobile websites. Third party cookies are blocked on Safari browser and hence user targeting becomes tough. Privacy compliant solutions for iOS Mobile Web user targeting are still in early stages of development.

Android Mobile App: Cookies do not work inside apps and hence the user targeting in Android apps is usually via a device id called Android_ID. However, this id is not privacy compliant as the user cannot opt out of this Android_ID based messaging.Google is introducing a new Android Advertising id that solves this privacy issue by allowing users to disable access to this id. However, this new id is still in very early stages of adoption across the mobile ecosystem.

iOS Mobile App: Cookies do not work inside apps and hence the user targeting in iOS apps is via a device id called IDFA (ID For Advertisers). This id is user privacy compliant as the user can disable access to this id. However, the IDFA is still not widely adopted in the complex mobile advertising landscape

Focusing of re-engagement of users

At present, most mobile advertising technology vendors are focused on driving app downloads for marketers. There is very little or no focus on how to re-engage with the users who have already come to the advertisers’ mobile website or have downloaded and used the mobile app. This leads to marketers reporting large numbers in user churn. The hard earned app downloads result in a one-time app usage and eventually the user uninstalling the advertiser’s app.

Authored by: Shiju Mathew, Mobile Product Manager with Vizury.

Social media has taken a centre stage and been influencing customer buying behavior. So, how can hoteliers ensure that they are using sites such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to their greatest advantage?

Online Reputation Management is essentially monitoring online opinions about your brand and using the information to create online strategies that promote your company successfully. The ever increasing reach of the internet has allowed customers to share their thoughts on every aspect of life. This ultimately includes your hotel. This is why it is so important to maximise positive comments and limit any negative commentary as much as you can. If a customer searches for your brand online and finds a multitude of mediocre or lacking reviews, it is unlikely that they will chose to patronize you. However, all is not lost; because in fact, the art of online reputation management can be mastered in three simple steps.

Tracking is the first port of call. As mentioned earlier, almost every traveler will perform online research prior to making a booking. Therefore it is important that hotel owners know exactly what is being said about them online. The use of social media networks to respond to appropriate social activity and hotel mentions will have a large effect on the hotel's overall reputation and branding. Simply obtaining and updating accounts with all of the major social networks will enable you to track everything that is being discussed in regards to hotels and your brand.

Having gathered the information, the next step is to analyze. Reputation management tools allow you to know what guests are saying about you at various sites from one single platform. You can identify your pros and cons and develop your marketing campaign based on your strengths.

It’s important that you respond to customer feedbacks, even if it’s negative. This shows your sincerity in addressing their concerns. Engage with customers as much as possible, responding to reviews positive or negative. Learn as much as you can about each specific site and its limitations. Most importantly, find and communicate with your target audience, only then will you build unique and loyal customer relationships.

And remember; social media is a constantly growing and fluctuating enterprise. Learning to be flexible and dexterous now will greatly increase your chances of improving reputation.

Authored by: Ayushi, a digital enthusiast whose interests lie in all things technology and management. She is associated with eRevMax, the company behind the innovative hotel management software, RateTiger.

We’ve seen all sorts of news coming out of Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona, but it appears the biggest overall trend is a renewed focus on emerging markets. The App planet section at the event was buzzing with companies offering a suite of advertising solutions.

The five most noteworthy trends evolving for mobile advertising in emerging markets are:

#1 Mobile ad tech is on the rise

Throughout 2014 and beyond, emerging markets will see more players in the space of real time bidding, mobile retargeting, mobile DSPs, mobile ad servers and other mobile ad tech companies. Buying platforms and ad servers such as Smaato and Nexage will benefit from the industry’s shift to exchange-based and programmatic trading models. Some of the mobile ad networks seemed to find it hard to put out a coherent story around new trends and spoke about quality and data at their core. This will bring in an increased level of much needed transparency to the advertising ecosystem.

#2 Cheaper smartphones = better communication opportunities

This year handset-makers really dug in, using press conferences to vocalise their goals at nabbing the next billion users and presenting lower cost phones meant for first-time smartphone owners. Mozilla introduced a smart phone at USD 25, with the enhanced FireFox OS aimed at challenging Google’s Android play. The phone is to be launched in Q2 2014, among Alcatel and ZTE. Nokia introduced its X range of phones on Android at USD 50-80. LG introduced its L series aimed at emerging markets. As companies tackle the issue of rural market distribution and data connectivity, these phones will pave the way for enhanced ways to reach out to a mass audience on mobile, which is currently restricted to SMS and voice communication.

#3 Facebook’s commitment – internet for everyone

Facebook is clearly committed to an internet that is accessible to more people at an affordable price. This is in line with Facebook’s goal of being a ‘mobile company’.

As keynote speaker, Mark Zuckerberg spent most of his time discussing Internet.org, the ambitious project that aims to get the whole world online. As key partnerships fall in line, 2015 and beyond would only open out new advertising models that ride on cheaper and faster access to internet for emerging markets, which ease out and shift the payment for data services from end users.


#4 Entry of ad networks

Everyone is looking at APAC as their expansion market. Companies like Xad, Tapjoy, Tremor Video and so on that are predominant in the Americas and the UK are now looking at Asia markets as launch this year. From a region dominated by 3-4 mobile ad networks, we will see a diversity of networks bringing in new set of innovations in ad formats, buying models, targeting and tracking capabilities.

#5 Mobile content and discovery apps

As brands increasingly take the path to app creation, discovery apps really are becoming a key distribution path now in addition to conventional approaches such as mobile banner ads. App Gratis and App Turbo showcased their discovery and curating platform that recommends specific apps to the user. Plenty of companies are offering platforms to create mobile-ready content quickly, such as AppMachine. This offers advertisers opportunities to get mobile ready at a fast pace, if they are not already.

Authored by: Atibhi Mehra, Head of Mindshare Mobile Centre of Excellence India

Monday, 08 July 2013 00:00

Is technology taking over advertising?

Has technology started replacing the mental effort? Is it taking over our brain and turning it futile? What about big ideas? Has gennext stopped thinking because of easy referencing from the net? Where is technology moving to? Today, it has revolutionised the way we see and perceive every single thing! Its penetration has increased exceedingly in last 10 years.

It’s true and acceptable when everybody gets more techno-friendly but when it starts hindering one’s originality, it can certainly leave a bad taste. Technology is good to understand the market across the globe and interact with many minds to facilitate deeper understanding and knowledge. Losing the touch with upcoming technology could lead our business to loss. So the core issue isn’t on what technology to be used but the different ways we can actually use them.

With the growing craze for technology, the main concern for the advertising world is whether the current rage will reap benefits or can actually have negative consequences.

Earlier creativity was constrained due to lack of technological advancement. Today, technology has gifted a creatively liberating impact on the advertising community. With new technology, producing and altering ones actual ideas have become easy. With evolution of new trends in technology, ideas became more versatile, out of the box and sophisticated. But depending on technology for an idea could be potentially dangerous for the mind. An idea can only be formed by mental effort and no technology could produce an idea for you. Technology has certainly become an easy medium for referencing if you are stuck, whereas 15-12 years back the creative artists would depend on books, sourcing references from libraries. But efforts certainly made ideas more credible.

Today digital has become a big medium but understanding of communication has become weaker. Originality is lost and thoughts have just become arbitrary. Also with more data at our disposal, plagiarism may increase because of easy references for idea.

On the better side, thanks to technology, a tailor-made solution to a particular brand is possible. New technology has also helped to make things happen faster.

The dotcom era has brought about a revolution in the advertising world. Advertising is evolving to create a complimentary online campaign to a brand’s TV campaign. Now, it’s about experimenting with countless apps and networks that a customer pulls out of their pocket. Technology has paved way for the advent of social media advertising. Tweets, pop-ups, likes, web-banners, etc. have become a new branch of marketing known as viral marketing.

No doubt, the traditional medium of advertising viz. print and radio is to stay, but they have incorporated different technological advancements to stay alive. It clearly comes out that though technology has its pros and cons in advertising, the pros outweigh the cons by a great margin.

But the basic sensibilities and hard work should definitely prevail and nothing can overtake them. It’s sad that today’s generation know technology but not what to do with technology. People just beginning their careers in advertising should start using computer only when they get an idea. They should scribble, write, draw whatever, anywhere but get on their toes and not let technology take over their thinking power. Innovative thinking is theirs to keep and they should take pride in their ideas and not let technology take their ideas away from them!

Authored by: Sandeep Bomble, Founder and Creative director, Palasa.

Maya Louangelou wasn’t off the mark when she said that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will not forget how you made them feel. Infact, it holds true especially in times like today when the average person is exposed to over 4,000 advertisements in a day.  That is why experiential marketing has the key to something insanely powerful – the ability to engage consumers and to create brand experiences that will get them to stand up and take notice. Not just ‘good to do’ this has become outright mandatory for brands as they look for new and unique ways to connect with people.

While most brands tend to offer promises and claims – better, tastier, cheaper, newer they forget that they are one of billions saying the same things. Experiences on the other are unique. From my 12 years of getting brands up, close and personal with consumers, here’s what goes into creating unique and memorable experiences.

Thinking Larger than Life

Don’t blame your customers for turning off when you’re only saying something they’ve already heard by hundreds of others. Marketing that people seek out – and engage with cannot be regular and mundane. It must create a flutter in their daily lives - something that involves and excites them. We’ve all been to malls and we’ve all popped a piece of cake on Valentine’s Day. But it’s amazing to see a 1,000 kg cake at a mall on Valentine’s Day that doubles up as a QR code and lets you download the WeChat application – the product this campaign was for.

Meeting on New Ground

A sales pitch in the garb of an experiential marketing campaign is not fooling anyone. An experiential marketing campaign must make the brand and its customers participants in something new and exciting. Let go of the seller and buyer roles and your consumers will no longer see this as a marketing gimmick forced on them. Make it more about the shared adventure rather than sales and you’ve got a winning campaign on your hands. An online campaign got women tweeting about things that #doesntlastlongenough only to reveal the one thing that does – Maybelline SuperStay 14 long lasting lipstick. The campaign saw some really cheeky responses from men and women. By getting them to look into their lives and come up with quirky answers instead of talking about a product, it went viral easily and became the #1 trending topic in India on the day of the campaign.

Creating Personalized Experiences

Sure you want to see more and more people be a part of your campaign but it’s important to remember that at the end it boils down to the experience. The key is to think broadly and yet create personalized experiences. Each participant in the campaign must feel like it was an experience for him and not like he is one of many. A Bausch and Lomb ‘Before and After Campaign’ let people post pictures of themselves with glasses (before) and without them (after) to see the difference that contact lenses would make in their appearance. All those who participated in the campaign saw something that would bring about a real difference in their personal lives making this an award winning campaign.

Finding the Right Fit

Is your campaign based on an insight? Does it solve a problem or appeal to an aspiration they share? Instead of trying to fit them into your campaign, design your campaign around their lives. When Euro RSCG Australia decided to change their name to Havas World, they wanted the change to reach out to more than just the company and its stakeholders. To extend the change in to daily lives of people, the agency started a ‘pay with a smile campaign’ based on the insight that 97% people in Australia hate the early morning travel to work. Free cookies were handed out in return making for a cheerful start to the day. This was one campaign by another agency that I really liked and thought to be effective.

Where and When

Does the campaign meet them at the right place and time? Or does it interfere with a busy day when they’re looking to get back home? The best campaigns are those that come at an opportune time when they have a ‘this is just what I needed’ effect. Another campaign by a different agency was the 7Up ‘Melting Machine’ where a frozen vending machine was set up on the streets of Argentina one hot summer offering a much needed break to people who were not already vacationing in cooler climes. The integrated twitter campaign asking people to tweet the exact time the entire vending machine would melt and disappear only worked because it was happening during the summer vacations when everyone has some time to spare.

Will it Pass The Share Test?

Great brand experience is something we tell someone else about.  A great brand experience is a story, in which the user – not the brand – is the hero. It is something worth sharing, writing about – or at least texting a friend, sharing it on a social media platform, telling someone about it, anyone.  Your campaign must create an experience that people will remember and pass on. If it’s not worth remembering it’s probably not worth doing.

Authored by: Ankur Kalra,  Founder &  CEO of Vibgyor


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