A new mobile ad unit lifted purchase intent for Wish-Bone salad dressings by 87 percent. The ad unit was used as a content gate for streaming music site Songza, providing premium ad revenue.
Solve Media launched Mobile TYPE-IN to deliver ads via the mobile web and mobile apps. The full-screen, high-res ads ask consumers to type in a brand message in order to access content. Solve provides a similar service for web ads, turning the captcha into an ad.
In the case of Unilever, mobile users were asked to type in one of the Wish-Bone brand attributes - "sassy," "tangy," or "tasty" - in order to receive 24 hours of nonstop music on Songza.
Research conducted with Unilever showed 87 percent lift for purchase intent for Wish-Bone salad dressings, against comScore mobile norms of 23 percent, and 122 percent lift in awareness, compared to comScore mobile norms of 48 percent, using Solve Media's Mobile TYPE-IN platform. The research surveyed consumers who had and had not been exposed to the ads.
TYPE-IN ads are sold on a pay-for-performance basis, and Ari Jacoby, CEO of Solve Media, says his company guarantees not only impressions but also the effectiveness of brand campaigns such as Unilever's. To do this, Solve conducts awareness research following every branding campaign. "Measurement is critically important in this ecosystem," he says.
Elias Roman, CEO of Songza, says it takes an average of seven seconds for consumers to complete the ad engagement. Although one ad impression every 24 hours might seem scant, Roman says, "On mobile, we want to change the ratio of high-frequency, low-engagement advertising. If marketers see enough ROI that the CPM can be lifted enough, then all of a sudden, the math starts to add up. It's a testament to the numbers they're seeing through the comScore studies."
Neither Roman nor Jacoby would disclose the CPMs being charged for the TYPE-IN ads.
Unilever ran the Wish-Bone ads in May and June, in apps and on mobile websites, with the majority of them in-app. The ads ran across Solve's 6,300 publishers, including Meredith and Bauer.
According to Jacoby, in addition to reinforcing the brand message, TYPE-IN ads reduce false impressions. He says, "The rub for mobile has historically been that the ads are very small and quite susceptible to being accidentally clicked on. It's quite awful for the marketer because it chews up budget with errant clicks - and it infuriates users."
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Susan Kuchinskas has covered interactive advertising since its invention. The former staff writer for Adweek, Business 2.0, and M-Business covers technology, business and culture from Berkeley, CA.
March 19, 2014