MASTERCLASSING

Mobixell Sees Potential for Ad-funded Content

David Murphy

A UK survey commissioned by Mobixell Networks which provides mobile multimedia and advertising solutions, has found that a sizeable opportunity exists amongst the 16-34 year-old demographic to offer ad-funded mobile content via rich media services like multimedia messaging or mobile video services. The findings of the survey, conducted among 832 mobile phone users, reveal that 35% of 16-35 year-olds would use more MMS and 29% would use more video services if they were offered free or discounted in return for receiving mobile adverts. 
The survey, which was conducted by independent research company Gfk NOP, revealed that users interest and receptiveness in accepting mobile ads extends beyond the traditional realm of SMS text messaging - as exemplified by services like Blyk - into rich media services such as video clips, photo-messaging and Mobile TV. Bearing in mind also that the 18-35 age group currently consumes 56% of todays mobile media content this offers access for advertisers to a young audience that makes up only 29% of TV viewers. 
Mobixell says the findings make encouraging reading for mobile operators keen to increase uptake of mobile content, as they highlight the potential for attracting new users to these services, as well as encouraging more usage by existing users. Respondents across all age groups reacting positively to the use of ad-sponsored content in video services comprised of 35% who were existing video users and 13% were non users. For photo messaging, 46% were existing users and 13% had not previously used the service but could be tempted to do so if the service were ad-funded.   
Mobixell notes that advertisers are also waking up to the potential for reaching mobile users with rich media content. According to a Jupiter Research report, Mobile Advertising in Europe (December 26, 2007), 58% plan to use MMS images, 56% in-stream video ads and 50% had plans for MMS video campaigns in the next 12 months. 
The mobile advertising market is precariously perched on the verge of exploding, says
Avichai Levy, Senior VP Marketing at Mobixell. Mobile operators are ideally placed to benefit from this new market, ahead of Internet competitors like Google and Yahoo, but unless they tread carefully and protect the interests of their subscribers by putting in place carefully conceived checks and balances - like those provided by our mobile advertising platform - to protect users and advertisers, they also have the most to lose if they get it wrong. Our advice is definitely proceed with care.
The complete findings of the survey can be downloaded from the Mobixell website.