local media insider

The emerging market for local mobile


Local mobile revenues - yes, revenues - are finally beginning to develop. Some companies are now selling sponsorships on text alert programs to healthcare services and credit unions for as much as $8000 a month. Cirque de Soleil is a mobile advertiser in several markets, as is McDonalds. 

Other emerging advertisers include Honda, Cheverolet, Toyota and LandRover in the automotive category - all of these companies have placed mobile buys with local media comanies in various markets. 

One of the unique facts that is barely realised however, is that mobile advertising is a new way to reach men.  Young men, in particular, are a new target market that over indexes in mobile shopping (see report here).

We've already posted one winning ad that uses mobile and specifically targets young men (ages 25 to 34): Credit unions refinancing car loans. But I know of several regional beer distributors that would be all over these numbers and especially interested sponsoring local events promoted via mobile campaigns.

Freedom Interactive's Doug Bennett spoke at the Borrell Local Mobile conference about developing mobile apps for multiple channels at multiple properties to deliver targeted audience of smart phone users. 

After launching around 100 apps across its properties, Bennet gave his top tenets for winning in the mobile space. While smaller media companies will not be building apps themselves, there are a number of third party partners that allow even small sites to deploy apps as well as browers. The full case study on Freedom's mobile initiative is here. 

Another piece of good news is that the difficulty of building an opt-in text message list is going to fuel an increasing number of local advertising buys. Opt-in campaigns have very high conversions -  25% per text message is common for some companies. Advertisers who want to expand their opt-in list have confirmed metrics and need promotional horsepower.  We can see this providing a new source of advertising revenues  for both traditional media and high traffic sites and another good reason to get into the SMS business. A full discussion of mobile opportunities is here. 

Thanks to Borrell & Associates  for putting on a terrific Local Mobile Advertising Conference, which has generated insights as well as leads for a number of the case studies on mobile you see on this site, including selections of the "best of the best" in print, radio and broadcast mobile deployment. Thanks also to Doug Bennett, president of Freedom Interactive and Joy Luizzo, senior director of InsightExpress, for sharing business insights this week.