...Advertising Really Sucks – Introducing The iAd

From Apple's Site:
iAd is a breakthrough mobile advertising platform from Apple. With it, apps can feature rich media ads that combine the emotion of TV with the interactivity of the web. For developers, it means a new, easy-to-implement source of revenue. For advertisers, it creates a new media outlet that offers consumers highly targeted information.

So many of you are asking me my thoughts on the iAd. As and advertiser, gadget freak and creative dick, I'm as excited as a larper with a new set of crystal dice! Of course you cannot make too much fuss over the new advertising platform that will be built into the new iPhone OS Version four. Given that you did you'd be explaining to the world that not only do you hold the magic ticket to the future of 'interactive advertising' (which I'm dying to coin some stupid mash-up for like "adverteractive" or something equally as moronic) but that the potential money made the platform will be insane. You would also be telling the world that the snake oil that we sell in advertising will not only be more engaging but it might give the advertising brand more than a nanosecond to capture you're attention. It's a slippery slope, people don't want to sold on anything anymore. Word-of-Mouth, ratings and reviews are the trusted sensei of the selling world. Everyone now rebells against being hit-up on my marketing. But that could change.

Jesse Schell goes on a nightmarish tale of how the neo-world is a complex matrix of gaming and data capture. While somewhat far fetched, I don't (much to the chagrin of some of my readers) think the guy's a crackpot. Besides the fact that Jesse might want to consider decaf as an option, he does outline ad nauseam our obsession with rewards and competition.

What does this mean Justice? Get to the point!

The point is that iAds put people in an engagement arena that doesn't feel like traditional forms of marketing. There's movement, animation, game-play, data-capture, incentivizing and potentially... rewards and competition. Why should advertisers care? Simple – the iAd mobile platform, which Steve Jobs said had the opportunity to make 1 billion ad impressions a day on tens of millions of Apple mobile device users – including the iPhone and the iPad. Like it or not it's the most complete way to advertise within one space ever assembled.

Steve Jobs says of Apple new service:

“Well, we’ve got a lot of free apps — we like that, users like that, but these developers have to find a way to make some money, and we’d like to help them...What some of them are starting to do is put mobile ads in their apps… and most of this advertising sucks. We want to help developers make money with ads so they can keep their free apps free.

On a mobile device, search is not where it’s at, not like on the desktop. They’re spending all their time on these apps — they’re using apps to get to data on the internet, not generalized search...

The average user spends over 30 minutes using apps on their phone. If we said we wanted to put an ad up every 3 minutes, that’d be 10 ads per device per day — about the same as a TV show. We’re going to soon have 100m devices. That’s a billion ad opportunities per day!

...This is a pretty serious opportunity, and it’s an incredible demographic. But we want to do more than that. We want to change the quality of the advertising. We’re all familiar with interactive ads on the web. They’re interactive, but they’re not capable of delivering emotion."

Other Important items of note:

  • Apple will offer developers 60% of ad revenue, and will sell, host, and deliver ads itself.
  • This comes on the heels of Google purchase (well $750,000,000 shares) of their ad network previously called "AdMob".
  • Advertising is completely new revenue model for Apple.
  • iAd platform will not have as broad a base limiting itself to Apple products (running the iPhone OS) the iPAd, iPod Touch and iPhone.
  • iAd requires HTML5 for animation as Apples refusal to adopt Adobe Flash will seemingly never end.
  • Targeting and measurement systems remain to be seen.
  • While speculation on my part, the iPad apps right now are somewhat expensive in comparison to what we've seen in the iPhone app world. Therefore, it's reasonable to assume that the iAd model will also be costly for the advertiser at least until normality sets in – say a year.
  • What does this mean for the Apple OS?

Lastly, I leave with a question I will ponder for some time. What does it mean when you pour the advertising world into the hands of developers? Like it or not we will see!

Great related article since this post:

"Apple Introduces iAd: All iPhone 4.0 Roads Lead to Advertising"

Posted on April 9, 2010 and filed under Advertising, Interactive, Technology.