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October 23, 2008

Mobile’s Big Break

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It’s been the Year of Mobile for the last, what, five years now? But mobile may have finally gotten its big break. For so many years it seemed obvious to the search industry that mobile was the next frontier because, as the tech-savvy early adopters, we’ve turned to mobile search and Web to get us through even the simplest daily activities. And it looks like mobile search and Web have found footing in the mainstream.

Mobile advertising is booming

AdMob, a mobile advertising network, is performing profitably and recently received third-round funding, despite the lagging economy and gloomy economic forecasts. The company reported a tripling of the number of ads it served this year to 4.52 billion.

According to the article:

“Clients are busy planning campaigns on AdMob well into next year. It has yet to see demand slow down, and instead has increased its number of ad clients to more than 6,000 today.”

Smart phone usage is spreading

Also explained in the VentureBeat article, “The company’s ads on the iPhone have been going particularly well… [AdMob Marketing VP Jason Spero] expects to see much of the same ad growth on Android devices as the company has seen through the iPhone.”

Of course, it makes sense that smart phone adoption is driving advertisers to networks like AdMob. One of the biggest factors that previously kept users off the mobile Web was that mobile Web browsing was so slow and unfamiliar. Smart phones coupled with affordable data plans mean that a familiar Web browsing experience is finding its way into more and more pockets. (You want to be in those pockets, right? Check out Cindy Krum’s suggestions on optimizing for mobile.) The power of true-Web technology is also evidenced by the lengths at which AT&T will go to hold on to its iPhone partnership.

Mobile users are getting their social media fix

Web browsing has gotten so comfortable that users are accessing their social networks from their mobile phones. Updates and uploads are easier than ever on mobile phones and it’s only getting easier with the advent of third-party applications. Mobile and social are both virtual watering holes. Combine them together and you’ve got the potential for an advertiser’s dream land!

Google’s pushing into the space, so you know it’s the future

When Google recognizes an opportunity, it’s usually not slow to act. Google has been reaching into the mobile space for some time now, achieving new heights with the release of the first phone running Google’s mobile operating system, Android. Another smart phone on the market means another chance users will be attracted to the mobile Web. Today Google also announced the release of Gmail for mobile 2.0, showing a clear belief that mobile is the place to be.

So, where are you?

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3 responses to “Mobile’s Big Break”

  1. Nick Stamoulis writes:

    I think we have only just begun seeing the boom of mobile advertising. more and more people are learning how to use PDA’s and portable devices that stream internet.

  2. Virginia Nussey writes:

    Hi Nick,
    I totally agree. Mobile marketing potential has been building momentum for some time now. When I decided to write this post I was struck by the fact that mobile ad networks are finally seeing profits. Maybe not a profound notion, but worth noting. Now that mobile’s got its break, I expect to see a lot more in the future. :)

  3. Cindy Krum writes:

    Hey Virginia,

    Great post & thanks for mentioning me! There are definitely a lot of things companies should be thinking about in order to get ready for mobile search.

    CK



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