5 Tips for Better Mobile Ads

Peter Roesler, President - Web Marketing Pros

By Peter Roesler

President, Web Marketing Pros

mobile-marketingIt’s always important for marketers to adapt their content to fit their medium. TV ads aren’t just radio ads with pictures and the same is true for desktop and mobile ads. Even though both are methods of online advertising, that’s where the similarities end. Copying a desktop ad to mobile with no modification is a recipe for lackluster performance. Here are five tips marketers can use to make better mobile ads.

  1. Use Simple Design and Text
    It’s important to remember that mobile ads have significantly less space to work with for design and there is less time to get a consumer to act before they move onto something else. Mobile internet users who browse while on the go want the information they find to be short, sweet, and to the point. This means shorter calls to action, clear messaging (people shouldn’t have to think about it too much) and simple art for a small space (too much clutter will make the ad hard to read) With mobile ads, simplicity is the best approach in both imagery and ad copy. Use some of the mobile design tips described in another article on this site.

  2. Use In-Ad Engagement to Lower CPAs
    Not all mobile ads are banner ads, and marketers who can afford to use some of the more advanced ad option should consider using in-ad engagement. This includes ads where users can fill out forms or sign up for a promotion right from the ad. There is a rule in mobile that every additional click required loses half your audience, especially if that click takes them out of the app they were in. According to Trevor Sumner of LocalVox, marketers may see click-through rates that are two times higher.

  3. Use Geotargeting
    Mobile advertising has great potential for location-based targeting and business should take advantage of it. For one thing, geotargeting means that ads are only going to people near a location so there are far fewer wasted impression. Similarly, showing the ad to more of the right people will lead to higher engagement rates and more leads. As ad platforms become more advanced, these targeting options will become more advanced and will better able to reach consumers at the times they are most likely to click on ads.

  4. Encourage Social Sharing
    Enabling social sharing on a mobile ad or on the landing page will give the ads additional reach. People are more than happy to share news about a generous offer or sale at a retailer if they feel it’s worth sharing and the option is available. Marketers could increase the reach of their ads even further if the incentivize social sharing. Similarly, people want to share videos they find interesting. Adding these social sharing options can be what makes an ad go viral. Mobile is the platform for sharing. A recent study from Media Bistro showed that users are three times more likely to share content via their iPhones than their desktops.

  1. Ensure Landing Pages Are Mobile Optimized
    This seems obvious but there are often problems that result from marketers quickly moving desktop campaigns to include mobile. If there isn’t a mobile site skip the agony of inflated cost-per-click, low quality scores and poor conversion rates: don’t launch mobile ads until the landing page is certain to launch quickly and properly on all mobile devices. . The speed of mobile devices and mobile internet have changed consumer expectations for their ad experience on mobile device. Business owners need to be sure they’re meeting those expectations.

There is a lot of concern about the effectiveness of mobile ads and rightfully so. Business owners don’t want to waste money on ineffective ads but they can’t ignore the size of the audience using mobile devices. These tips show it’s possible to build mobile ads that accomplish their goals. For more tips on mobile marketing, read this article on developing a mobile site.


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