I was just talking about this last week on the show, and it looks like today is a big day for mobile advertising!
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Google’s really getting serious about mobile advertising. In November they purchased AdMob, a mobile display ad technology provider, for $750 million. If you’ve seen skinny horizontal ads at the top of an iPhone app or game, those have most likely been AdMob’s doing. In the past, AdMob has concentrated on mobile display ads, while Google has focused on search ads.
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The amount of money Google spent on this purchase shows how important Google feels the subject of mobile advertising really is. It IS the future of advertising. And to prove the seriousness of Google in this direction of advertising, here’s a bit of a letter that I received this morning:
“Dear AdWords Advertiser,
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“We’re pleased to announce that beginning in January, your location-specific business phone number will display alongside your destination url in ads that appear on high-end mobile devices. Users will be able to click-to-call your business just as easily as they click to visit your website. You’ll be charged for clicks to call, same as you are for clicks to visit your website…”
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Google is making it easier for mobile users to engage with your ads. And this is just the beginning. Google’s own phone, which uses Android software, called “Nexus One” is being unveiled at the Googleplex in Silicon Valley right NOW as I type this post. It’s intended to be part of a new class of phones called “superphones”.
The other very interesting thing about this is Google moving forward with an implementation of click to call advertising. I’ve seen other networks like Commission Junction roll out this kind of program and I’ve even seen Google dong experimental click to call tests, but this is the first time that I know of Google fully rolling out this type of advertising.
What’s everyone else doing about this? Not sure, but at the moment iPhone users are still happy with their iPhones, and Blackberry users are still loyal Blackberry users. But here’s something: the rumor is that Apple is acquiring a company called “Quattro Wireless”, which is a mobile advertising company who rivals AdMob. So it doesn’t look like everyone is sitting back on their haunches while Google takes over the mobile universe. Which is something I find comforting.