Infographic: Is Gamification Mobile Advertising’s Secret Weapon

A study into mobile engagement by Celtra has found that including gamified elements within HTML5 results in much higher levels of engagement among consumers.

Ads with gaming elements showed engagement rates of 16.2 per cent, compared to 10.4 per cent for standard HTML5 display ads, and had a click-though-rate almost 25 percentage points higher.

You can find these facts, and more, in the infographic below.


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Innovation Lab: The Biggest Ideas in Tech This Week

If you’ve been to one of Dot Media’s events, you’ll know that our Innovation Lab hosts companies presenting cutting-edge technology that’s poised to transform the market with groundbreaking ideas and solutions.

In that spirit, we’ve taken a step beyond the world of apps, ads and handsets with slightly bigger screens, in order to share some of the tech world’s most innovative ideas. They might be interesting, disruptive or just outright strange, but these are the stories that have caught our eye over the past week.

First Feature-length Oculus Rift Film is a Hallowe’en Horror

The first ever feature-length film for Oculus Rift has been released, just in time for a terrifying Hallowe’en. The film, a horror movie called The Banshee Chapter, was originally released through video-on-demand in 2013, but has been given a virtual reality overhaul by VR company Jamwix.

While the film doesn’t take advantage of any of the Rift’s interactive features and, more importantly, doesn’t offer a 360 degree experience, instead delivering a 120 degree field of view that wraps around the viewer, it does support head tracking with 3D depth, which should serve to immerse viewers into the film more. The film is available for free through the Oculus Rift website, but requires the DK2 version of the headset and a Mac to be viewed.

nextdoor_treatmap_iphoneNextdoor Launches ‘Treat Map’ to Find Best Trick or Treating Routes

Hyperlocal social network Nextdoor has created a ‘Treat Map’ on its app for Hallowe’en trick-or-treaters that enables users to highlight houses that are giving out the best sweets.

App users can mark locations with a candy corn-shaped icon to notify others within the neighbourhood that they have a particularly good stash of chocolate treats. Houses can even tag themselves to encourage visitors or get rid of leftovers, although as a security feature, the app requires locals to prove they reside in the area using a phone call or credit card address verification.


Smart Cocktail Shaker Guides You Through Process and Measures as you Pour

With the Christmas party season rapidly approaching, those hoping to impress with their mixology skills might well want to back the B4RM4N smart cocktail shaker on its Kickstarter page. A standard three-piece cocktail shaker, the B4RM4N features an integrated high-precision weight sensor, accelerometers and Bluetooth chip to connect to smartphones.

Using an accompanying app, the shaker can fetch recipes then guide users through the mixing procedure, with a coloured LED indicator displaying when you have added enough of each ingredient.

smartcaneIndian Institute of Technology Develops SmartCane to Assist Blind Pedestrians

Researchers at Assistech, part of the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi, have created a vibrating SmartCane to help visually impaired people detect obstacles above knee height and from a greater distance, aiding them in navigating their everyday life.

The SmartCane has received a grant from the Wellcome Trust R&D for Affordable Healthcare in India initiative, and aims to replicate the effects of other visual impairment-aids at a fraction of the price for users. The device utilises ultrasonic sensors to detect obstacles up to three metres away, with feedback delivered to the user through vibrations.

“It feels great to be able to move around alone,” said Indirani Sankari, who has used the SmartCane. “I no more need to hold anyone’s hand for my mobility. I can just be myself. Family and friends now have the confidence in me that I can travel independently without getting hurt or injured.”

Warblr App is Shazam for Songbirds

warblr prototypeMuch like popular apps Shazam and SoundHound, Warblr transforms smartphones into a microphone that can analyse and identify sound. However, rather than using it to pinpoint pop songs, the app uses the technology to identify birds by their distinctive calls.

The app, which is currently seeking backing on Kickstarter, has to adapt for the varying speeds and cadences that different birds of the same species may employ, as well as the fact that individual birds often develop a large repetoire of calls and songs. However, the app’s user interface is simple, with users pressing a button and the app returning relevant information such as the bird’s name, species and defining characteristics.

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Awards Preview – Most Effective Rich Media Campaign

Effective_Mobile_Marketing_Awards (45)The 2014 Effective Mobile Marketing Awards Ceremony takes place on 27 November in London. Between now and then, we are throwing the spotlight on the finalists in each of the 26 categories.

Today, we take a closer look at the nominees for the Most Effective Rich Media Campaign.

Mindshare and Unilever – Hellmann’s Makes It
In order to increase their association between their mayonnaise and sandwiches, Hellmann’s used highly engaging rich media mobile formats to target mums using smartphones and tablets. The creative highlighted a variety of key words related to key sandwich fillers, accompanied with a ‘join the debate’ call to action.

Mindshare and ITV – ITV Player Me Time
ITV worked with Celtra to create a bespoke social rich media ad unit which appeared in Facebook users’ newsfeeds on mobile. The key objective was to encourage discovery on ITV Player by matching shows to the user’s mood. The campaign reached over 19m people and helped boost ITV’s Facebook fan base.

Amobee – eBay Build Your World
eBay selected Amobee to deliver an immersive rich media mobile ad campaign targeting social-mobile users in Russia with an interest in lifestyle, fashion or sports. The campaign invited mobile users to play a shopping-themed game within the Facebook mobile app in order to win a 10 per cent discount coupon.

Amobee – InfinitiJX 3D
Mindshare and Amobee were tasked with promoting the launch of the Infiniti JX. The ad campaign targeted key audiences throughout the Middle East and North Africa with creative featuring a 3D model of the car which could be explored in real time.

Manning Gottlieb OMD & Mobile5 – Renault ZOE Locate and Personalise
Understanding the niche market for the ZOE electric car, this campaign targeted four key cities in the UK that indexed highly for electronic vehicle buyers – Bristol, Cardiff, Newcastle & Glasgow – alongside local dealership events. Consumers were shown a rich media ad unit specific to their area, showing the lower cost of travelling to local landmarks in the ZOE.

OMD UK, Mobile5, YOC and Coty UK – Rimmel London Rita Ora Colour Rush Collection
To promote the launch of Rimmel London’s Rita Ora collection, OMD’s created an immersive mobile rich media experience, displayed across premium sites and apps, where users could pick a shade of nail polish or lipstick and see how it looked on a picture of Rita Ora.

Millennial Media & Havas Media – Malibu Best Summer Ever
Malibu parent company Pernod Ricard worked with Havas Media to deliver a brand-focused mobile video experience, which was the first to leverage two ad units from Millennial Media – Video Ticker and Video Toggle. This campaign was tied into National Pina Colada Day on 10 July and competitions for Ibiza Rocks, and retargeted users who had viewed the videos with standard banners.

Millennial Media – North Face Never Stop Exploring
In advance of the crucial winter holiday season, The North Face turned to Millennial Media to help deploy its first ever mobile campaign as part of its Never Stop Exploring campaign. Targeting 18-34 year old males in Germany and Italy, the campaign used compelling video content with Millennial Media’s Video Plus ad unit.

LoopMe and Mediacom – Sky Christmas
With a firm focus on reaching families, LoopMe worked with certified partner Celtra to roll out expanded full-screen creative at massive scale. This targeting was achieved through the selection of family-friendly publications; by running in the early evenings and at weekends; and only running on wi-fi connections to ensure a domestic setting.

Blis Media and Starcom Mediavest – Spotify Story Telling
Blis Media was asked by Spotify to deliver 90 second TV ads to relevant audiences, to drive downloads of specially-themed Spotify playlists. In order to reach the target audience of millennials, Blis used its location retargeting technology, Path, to collect behavioural data a period of time, and then use it to serve the ads later on.

You can see the full list of finalists in all categories here.

To book your place at the Effective Mobile Marketing Awards Ceremony, click here. To get involved with the Awards as a Partner, contact

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Xiaomi is the World’s Third Biggest Smartphone Maker Without Leaving Asia

xiaomiChinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi has managed to become the world’s third largest smartphone maker without leaving the Asian market, new figures have revealed.

According to the latest numbers from the IDC, Xiaomi was responsible for over 5 per cent of the 327m new smartphones shipped in Q3 2014. Samsung retained first place with 78.1m, while Apple claimed second with 39.3m.

While Samsung still dominated, both IDC and Strategy Analytics‘ reports confirm that the company has dropped roughly 10 percentage points over the past year, shrinking its share from around a third to a quarter.

While Apple’s shipments have grown slightly, as have smaller manufacturers such as Lenovo and Huawei, Xiaomi’s low cost approach has seen it grow swiftly to overshadow global competitors while still operating primarily in China.

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Tencent Partners with IBM to Venture into Cloud and Smart City Solutions

tencentTencent Holdings, best known for its popular WeChat messaging app and online game offerings, has partnered with IBM to develop cloud-based software for corporate customers, with a focus on the healthcare and smart city industries.

One of China’s premier companies in the consumer internet industry, Tencent is looking to diversify as China’s businesses rapidly modernise their IT operations and seek more and more enterprise solutions.

The deal positions Tencent as a potential rival to Alibaba, which has worked with a number of Chinese data-centre providers with the aim of providing small- and medium-sized businesses with cloud-based services.

The two companies have signed a preliminary agreement to develop cloud-based Software-as-a-Service offerings such as management tools and analytics. These will be provided to sectors including banking, retail, healthcare and smart city developers by Tencent, run from their data centres.

“The industry dimension makes this especially appealing for businesses,” said Nancy Thomas, managing partner with IBM’s Business Consulting Services in China. “IBM and Tencent’s shared vision is not only to bring the scale and cost benefits of cloud computing to enterprises in China, but to add differentiating value by serving the particular needs of specific industries. That is the key to unlocking the transformative power of cloud computing.”

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Channel 4 Launches Interactive Mobile Video Ads

4Od CarouselChannel 4 has introduced a selection of interactive video ad formats (iVOD) for its iOS mobile and tablet apps, making it the first UK broadcaster to offer mobile supported interactive video ads for video on-demand.

The broadcaster has partnered with Innovid to develop a number of different ad formats for its on-demand platform. Ad Link places a range of social media and bespoke clickable links onto pre-roll video, while Ad Extend offers viewers the opportunity to watch an extended version of the ad.

Other formats include Ad Bloom, which provides microsite functionality within video ads, including data capture, and Ad Shop, which features a toolbar of the products shown within the pre-roll video that viewers can click to buy.

Channel 4 will continue to roll out further interactive ad formats to its iVOD suite, as well as expanding the range of platforms that support the interactive video ads. Currently, mobile and tablet viewers account for almost 50 per cent of Channel 4’s on-demand viewing.

“We’re excited to be the first broadcaster to launch mobile supported interactive ads on 4oD,” said David Amodio, digital leader at Channel 4. “As VOD consumption has risen on mobile platforms we have adapted our strategy accordingly – this was a key driver behind our decision to launch Shorts on 4oD this summer. This mobile ad innovation ensures we’re delivering our advertising partners maximum engagement with our valuable viewers wherever they’re watching.”

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Pub Chain Nicholson’s Embraces Digital Loyalty with App

hop circle nicholsons appPub chain and ale specialist Nicholson’s has launched an app with a built-in digital stamp card, aiming to encourage its Cask Ale Club members to replace their paper based loyalty cards with its new mobile system.

Developed in conjunction with digital consumer engagement specialists Eagle Eye Solutions, the Hop Circle app enables users to collect loyalty points and encourages them to try ales at the various different Nicholson’s pubs as part of its unique ‘Ale Trail’, as well as delivering news and offers to members.

The company hopes the app will give them greater insight and information into their guests, including preferences, purchasing behaviour and which rewards they prefer. The app also enables Nicholson’s to communicate with its customers through push notifications, increasing engagement with both the app and the brand.

“People predominantly associate loyalty programs with coffee chains,” said Phillip Blundell, CEO of Eagle Eye Solutions. “However, loyalty schemes are equally important for the hospitality sector. Nicholson’s new app will enhance their relationship with their customers, whilst driving footfall to their various individual pubs.

“The previous paper-based system did not provide them with this level of tangible data insights that could be applied to key business decisions. Knowing the preferences of your customers is critical to staying ahead in this increasingly competitive market.”

“The evolution of the partnership with Eagle Eye Solutions brings great benefit to Nicholson’s,” said Giles Codd, marketing manager at Nicholson’s. “Loyalty is key in the hospitality market and we want to ensure that we are using the very latest technologies to maintain and build a greater understanding of our customer base, and what appeals to them.”

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Samsung Unveils ‘Slimmest Smartphones to Date’ with Galaxy A5 and A3

SM-A500F_009_Set_BlackSamsung has introduced two new smartphones, the Galaxy A5 and Galaxy A3, which it is calling its ‘slimmest smartphones to date’.

The release comes off the back of its underwhelming earnings disclosure for Q3 2014 yesterday, during which it promised to introduce more desirable phones in an effort to recapture the high-level smartphone market.

The Galaxy A5 and A3 are both metallic-framed, moving away from the company’s traditional plastic bodies, and measure just 6.7mm and 6.9mm thick respectively.

The Galaxy A5 boasts a five inch screen, 2GB RAM, 1.2 GHz quad-core processor and 15 megapixel rear camera. The lower specc’ed Galaxy A3 has a 4.5 inch screen, 1GM RAM and an eight megapixel camera on the back. Both phones include a five megapixel front-facing camera, and run on Android KitKat.

The phones will launch in select markets including China in November, but prices have yet to be revealed. Samsung’s specific mention of China may be a reaction to Xiaomi’s gains in the region, which have propelled it to third largest manufacturer globally.

“The Galaxy A5 and A3 offer a beautifully crafted full metal unibody, slim design, superior hardware and the best possible social media experience,” said JK Shin, CEO and head of IT & Mobile communication at Samsung. “These devices make our advanced Galaxy experience even more accessible to young and trend conscious consumers.”

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ExoClick Launches App for Campaign Data Management

Exoclick Android AppAd network ExoClick has launched an Android app designed to enable advertisers and publishers to access data analysis tools for campaigns on the go.

The ExoClick Admin Panel app integrates the big data tools recently introduced to its Version 3 Admin Panel for desktops, and enables users to check account balances, campaign spending and sophisticated data analysis tools for both campaigns and publisher channels.

The advertisers dashboard page allows clients to see how their campaigns are evolving from day to day, producing graphs that incorporate time period, budget, clicks, impressions, CTR and more. The campaign page gives users access to conversion data covering several key variables including time, countries, devices, browsers and languages.

The stats page enables publishers to see traffic performance for their web and mobile channels and ad spots, filtered by time, location, OS, carrier and more, while the publisher dashboard reveals details of revenue earned, as well as projecting earnings forecasts.

“We have invested tech resources into the development of this application to work in unison with our Version 3 Admin panel update,” said Benjamin Fonzé, CEO and founder of ExoClick. “Now our clients can access their accounts from wherever they are, 24/7 from their Android devices, enabling them to react quickly to incoming data and analyse that data by various segments to increase their ROI. Our in-house development team is currently working on an iOS version of the app.”

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Predator Nutrition Hunts Down Mobile Consumers with New Site

predator nutritionSports nutrition and supplement retailer Predator Nutrition has launched an mCommerce site aiming to improve the experience of customers using smartphones and tablets to access its site, and increase mobile conversion rates.

The site, built in conjunction with mCommerce solution provider MoPowered, aims to bring mobile sales, currently representing 18 per cent of total sales, into line with online traffic, 33 per cent of which arrives from mobile devices. Currently, the company’s mobile site, which replicates its desktop version, sees high bounce rates and low conversion.

Aware that consumers are increasingly expecting a seamless mobile experience that offers the full functionality of any other channel, the company selected MoPowered to handle its mobile relaunch.

“The reality is that more customers come to a retail business through mobile than any other channel,” said Jim Rudall, sales director at MoPowered. “Mobile is the primary touch point and a bad mobile experience can cause long term damage to brand perception.

“The mobile shopping experience must reflect the fundamental differences with the desktop customer journey through every aspect of the navigation right through to a simplified checkout process. And the only way to achieve this cost-effectively is through embracing an mCommerce strategy.”

“Unlike other suppliers, MoPowered has been happy to work very collaboratively and flexibly with us,” said Reggie Johal, founder of Predator Nutrition. “We are expecting a projected increase in conversion of 50 per cent and it is in both MoPowered’s and our best interests for the mobile site to achieve this.”

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