Apple is preparing to announce European launch partners for its iAd mobile advertising product this week, but has found it more difficult to woo brands there than it did in the U.S., one report suggest.
According to a Financial Times story, the iAd’s European debut has already been delayed twice, and Apple has been forced to drop its $1 million minimum spend policy in order to attract interest from the major brands it’s pursuing.
Although Apple secured a solid lineup of advertisers for its U.S. iAd launch – including Nissan, Sears, and Citigroup – the actual rollout of those campaigns also appeared far from smooth. Brands and agencies have expressed frustration with Apple’s insistence on handling the production of campaigns itself, leading to delays and reportedly causing some brands to withdraw their campaigns completely.
Perhaps hoping to avoid a similar situation in Japan, Apple recently opted to partner with local agency group Dentsu for its launch there, choosing to hand off creative and sales responsibilities instead of building out its own in-house teams.
In Europe meanwhile, the Financial Times suggests Apple is in talks with brands including L’Oreal, Renault, and Nestle, and is expected to have its first campaigns live in early December.
Despite the delays and possible difficulties, European brands might still see added value in being the first to make use of the ads. As Phuc Truong, U.S. managing director of mobile agency Mobext points out, users are likely to be more engaged with the ads soon after launch, out of curiosity if nothing else. “The novelty [of the launch] will wear off,” he said of the format following its launch in the U.S. earlier this year.