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Mobile Advertising Growth Fueled by New Ad Formats on Smartphones
Posted: 15-May-2009 [Source: Limbo, GfK Technology, Brightkite]

[New Mobile Advertising Report shows 59% of Smartphone users recall seeing mobile advertising on their cell phone during the first quarter of 2009.]

Burlingame, CA -- Brightkite, the company that brings social networking back to the real world, and GfK Technology, a leading market research agency, today released their latest Mobile Advertising Report (MAR). The quarterly MAR is a tool to help marketers and their agencies monitor and understand the fast-changing mobile medium.

38% of US mobile phone owners recall seeing advertising on their cell phones in the first quarter of 2009, although for Smartphone (such as iPhone) users, 59% recalled seeing mobile advertising. For Smartphone users, the number one format is mobile web advertising, while for regular phone users, it is SMS. However, perhaps the most striking finding of this report is the increased breadth of mobile advertising formats that consumers are noticing. 23% of Smartphone users recall seeing SMS advertising, but 20% saw ads in mobile social networks and 15% saw ads in mobile TV/video. In just three months, the number of Smartphone users seeing ads inside a location-based network has almost tripled to 15%. At current growth rates, we can expect to see some of these formats surpass mobile web and/or SMS in 2009.

In addition to being more aware of mobile advertising, phone users are quickly adopting a much broader set of mobile services:

* 14% now use one or more location based services (peaking at 38% of iPhone users). * 10% use a mobile social network (33% of iPhone users). * The fastest growing application for iPhone users is games, which experiences a 21% growth quarter over quarter; 50% of iPhone owners are now playing games on their phone.

“Over the last few years, we’ve tracked the growth of mobile advertising, and this has been fueled by text messaging and mobile Internet formats. Now we are seeing consumers adopting a much broader set of mobile applications and services and this is exposing them to new ad formats,” explained Jonathon Linner, Brightkite’s CEO. “It’s fascinating to see that iPhone users are almost as likely to see ads in a mobile social network as they are in a text message. This was unthinkable 12 months ago.”

“If the iPhone is an indicator of future behavior across other handsets, then we would conclude that the former ‘standards’ of mobile advertising – WAP and SMS – are going to be caught up to and perhaps surpassed by ads inside of other applications and services,” says Colin Strong, head of Mobile Communications Research at GfK Technology.

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