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The big industry news this week was all about how Google plans to encrypt all of its keyword-level search data in the not-too-distant future. This has massive implications for both SEO and PPC companies and will likely have a major impact on strategy. I’m not going to cover that today though, because my blogging counterpart on the SEO side, Brian Rubin, already linked to some outstanding information earlier this week. Instead, in honor of the recent launch of the new iPhone, I’ve decided to do a focus on mobile. So break out your smartphone and get ready to learn…


  • The one thing that we all know for sure about mobile advertising is that it is growing at a fast pace. Currently, advertisers are spending more than double on mobile than they were spending only two years ago. This correlates not only with people spending more time on their handheld devices, but also with engagement rates and purchasing behavior. There are still doubts from many advertisers that mobile ads pay similar dividends to desktop ads, but the doubters are quickly being outpaced by a combination of believers and those just hoping not to be left behind.
  • Google has a new study out that attempts to assuage the fears of those mobile ad detractors. For those still not convinced that mobile marketing should be a top priority, check out this study that demonstrates that 70% of mobile searchers end up calling a business after the search. Of course, there will be some confirmation bias here – many people may just be searching for the phone number of the business that they were already planning to patronize – but that’s still an incredibly high rate of search-to-call. The last thing that any business owner should want would be to lose that valuable call to a competitor simply because he is unsure of the value of the click.
  • It wasn’t long ago that major companies were publicly doubting the efficacy of Facebook ads. Since then many have changed their tune, but the fact remained that if a company had X dollars to spend online, they might be better off spending them in search or display as opposed to the strange ecosystem of Facebook. The same may not be true of mobile ads, though, as Facebook has become something of the darling of the mobile ad scene. Even as ad buying on desktops has slowed, Facebook’s mobile ad business is growing and producing better returns for marketers. As many as 20% of US marketers think that Facebook mobile ads are “very effective,” which is up from 11% at the beginning of 2013. This is a very positive trend not only for Facebook but also for mobile advertisers and in-app advertisers of all stripes.
  • I didn’t realize it, but I think I might be a little bit obsessed with Marissa Mayer. She and Yahoo seem to work their way into the Plethora far more often than their market share would dictate. This week, Mayer made comments defending Yahoo’s big bet on mobile and, unless you haven’t been paying attention to what you’ve just been reading, it seems like that bet was a good one. Mayer sees the mobile market as a parallel to the search market years ago; there is outstanding potential and we’re still only at the beginning.

Mobile advertising has come a long way since its inception, but I agree with Marissa Mayer that it still has a long way to go. There remain improvements to be made with the user experience integration, and in-app advertising still has to shed the unflattering comparisons that it draws to the pop-up ads of yesteryear, but things are looking up. Not only is volume up, but so is engagement and ROI. For more on mobile and more on the online advertising scene as a whole, please come back next week. Thanks for stopping by!


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