Home  › Media › Mobile
bb-deal-on-iphone

Mobile Web or Mobile Apps? Both, Execs Say

  |  June 7, 2011   |  Comments

Marketers must embrace both channels to mirror consumer behavior.

With the continued advancement of HTML5 technology, marketers and publishers are beginning to debate the necessity of investing in mobile applications, as mobile websites become increasingly sophisticated. Why develop for numerous platforms - such as Android, iPhone and BlackBerry, for example - when you can develop just once in HTML5?

Speaking at the OMMA Mobile conference in New York City this morning, however, Louis Gump, VP of mobile for CNN, suggested attempting to choose between the two strategies is "like asking which wheel you'd rather have on a bicycle."

Acknowledging that it would be "great" to develop just once for a range of devices, Gump stressed that consumers continue to consume media and content through both channels. "Start with the consumer in mind… If you're trying to decide between mobile web and apps the answer is both, and both are going to continue to grow, we believe," he said.

Despite that outlook, Gump did suggest a tipping point would eventually be reached, and implied mobile web could eventually replace the native application. "If history is any guide, mobile web will have some major event that helps it come around, he said.

For a publisher such as CNN that approach makes complete sense, as it attempts to cultivate the largest audience it can, regardless of platform. According to Ken Harlan, co-founder and President of mobile ad network MobileFuse, however, the mobile web holds greater ad promise than apps.

"We definitely feel that's going to be where a large portion of the traffic is over time. We just don't know when that's going to be," Harlan told ClickZ, adding "We're servicing both channels, and I'm not going to make that bet, but we're not focusing on apps."

One important distinction between the two channels remains the issue of tracking and targeting, however. In-app measurement remains far more effective than that on the mobile web, thanks largely to the fragmented way in which mobile devices handle cookies. Despite that fact, Harlan believes his network's strength in mobile web sets it apart from its rivals. "Mobile web is probably 65 percent of our traffic. We've concentrated more on mobile web than anyone else," he said.

For agencies and advertisers, however, those metrics are essential to justify continued investment in the channel, and many focus their media buys on the app space as a result. "In-app is easier than mobile web to measure. We can get pretty accurate and similar metrics to those we would get online," explained Paul Gelb, VP and mobile practice lead for Publicis-owned Razorfish.

Tags:

ClickZ Live Chicago Join the Industry's Leading eCommerce & Direct Marketing Experts in Chicago
ClickZ Live Chicago (Nov 3-6) will deliver over 50 sessions across 4 days and 10 individual tracks, including Data-Driven Marketing, Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email. Check out the full agenda and register by Friday, Oct 3 to take advantage of Early Bird Rates!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jack Marshall

Jack Marshall was a staff writer and stats editor for ClickZ News from 2007 until August 2011. 

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get ClickZ Media newsletters delivered right to your inbox. Subscribe today!

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

IBM: Social Analytics - The Science Behind Social Media Marketing

IBM Social Analytics: The Science Behind Social Media Marketing
80% of internet users say they prefer to connect with brands via Facebook. 65% of social media users say they use it to learn more about brands, products and services. Learn about how to find more about customers' attitudes, preferences and buying habits from what they say on social media channels.

An Introduction to Marketing Attribution: Selecting the Right Model for Search, Display & Social Advertising

An Introduction to Marketing Attribution: Selecting the Right Model for Search, Display & Social Advertising
If you're considering implementing a marketing attribution model to measure and optimize your programs, this paper is a great introduction. It also includes real-life tips from marketers who have successfully implemented attribution in their organizations.

Jobs

    • Tier 1 Support Specialist
      Tier 1 Support Specialist (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreThis position requires a highly motivated and multifaceted individual to contribute to and be...
    • Recent Grads: Customer Service Representative
      Recent Grads: Customer Service Representative (Agora Financial) - BaltimoreAgora Financial, one of the nation's largest independent publishers...
    • Managing Editor
      Managing Editor (Common Sense Publishing) - BaltimoreWE’RE HIRING: WE NEED AN AMAZING EDITOR TO POLISH WORLD-CLASS CONTENT   The Palm...