LoopMe shortlisted for this year’s Effective Mobile Marketing Awards

The team at Mobile Marketing are certainly thorough. Their Effective Mobile Marketing Awards cover over 25 categories, and judging by the size of the shortlist, the longlist must have been immense.

Therefore we're really pleased to be in the Effective Mobile Marketing Awards shortlist this year. We submitted three entries, and they all made it. This means we continue our run of 100% success in getting to the shortlist for awards.

Our three entries were for...

  • Most Effective Advertising Network
  • Most Effective Native Advertising Campaign & Most Effective Social Campaign LoopMe & Mediacom - Selfridges "TheBeauty Project"
  • Most Effective Rich Media Campaign: LoopMe & Mediacom - Sky Christmas.
  • We're still waiting to see what happens with the shortlist for the People’s Choice awards. This will be released next week, and is where we get to vote for our first choice as 'real' mobile advertising people (as opposed to pretend ones). If we make the cut, we will be saturating social media with a call for people to vote for us. If it worked for Barack Obama, it'll work for us.
    Whatever happens, the Awards Ceremony will take place in London on 27 November in The Grand Tower Bridge Hotel, so we'll be there, en masse, wearing our finest finery. See you there then!

    Global first: mobile video to 1 billion consumers

    Back in 1998 the Sega Dreamcast launched with the line of 'up to six billion players' - meaning, access to the world's population at the time. By 2011, this had hit seven billion. According to Wikipedia, we're going to hit eight billion in 2026.  But right now, at the tail end of 2014 however, LoopMe can reach just over one in seven of us - that is, LoopMe can reach over one billion unique users globally, with full-screen ads on mobile devices that support rich-media and video HTML5 formats.

    This is no mean feat. We have achieved it by integrating via Real-time Bidding (RTB) with major mobile ad exchanges and large direct publisher integrations. This programmatic route gives advertisers access to massive scale for mobile video, with numbers comparable to TV size audiences. Suddenly TV's major gambit - reach via video - is no longer exclusive. We do it too.

    The main reason mobile video ad delivery is limited in scope is that the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB)’s Video Ad-Serving Template (VAST) standard, created specifically to enable video advertising, lacks wide-scale adoption. More to the point, it lacks adoption across ad exchanges that enable bidding - buying and selling - of mobile advertising inventory on mobile sites and apps. This means that volumes available to mobile video fall short of the audiences commanded by formats such as TV.

    Enter HTML5. With HTML5 smartphone penetration now running at approximately 2 billion devices worldwide, HTML5 solves this problem because it is an open standard, so it enables video and rich media in any full-screen ad space, via any ad exchange. This is why today, LoopMe can reach one billion  users. The open format means the greatest reach across an already installed user base. VAST is good, but VAST plus HTML5 is far better.

    For advertisers, as well as reach there are additional benefits to the HTML5 approach. For example, it provides creative flexibility for brands to align their integrated marketing communications campaigns by supporting features such as call-to-action end cards that appear once a video has completed.

    Advertisers also benefit from the richer data environment of RTB. Bid requests typically pass more data from apps and sites than ad networks and direct publishers, including demographic and location latitude and longitude coordinates. This richer data environment is a key consideration for advertisers when thinking about how to scale up so that they can be everywhere, but zero in so that they find the right inventory.

    The programmatic route also enables much improved transparency to support brand safety. Again, it's the data that enables us to do this, through measures such as black- and white-listing to restrict which publications are acceptable; private exchanges that facilitate exclusive agreements between advertisers and publishers; and RTB content categories that zero in on specific types of publishers.

    If you're interested in reaching the widest audience with the best-performing format with accurate targeting - that is, buying mobile video programmatically - then get in touch with out LoopMe sales team on sales[at]loopmemedia[dot]com.


    Mobile video and programmatic

    How big is the video programmatic opportunity

    If numbers are anything to go by, the eMarketer figures showing time spent by media by US adults, forecasts mobile to overtake online this year and contribute 50% to the overall digital media consumption number. At an overarching level, digital media consumption has been steadily growing year-on-year over the past five years and now represents over 47% of all media consumption in US. TV media consumption during the same period has been declining and now only accounts for 36% of all media consumption - that’s just 10% behind digital. The gradual yet significant shift in consumer media consumption behaviour is challenging existing advertising models and forcing agencies to re-think for the first time how they allocate budgets in the future.

    Traditional marketers have developed successful brands in the tried and tested way via access to massive audience scale on TV. Over the last fifty years or so, agencies have cracked TV advertising and more importantly consumers get it. The new shift in consumer media consumption behaviour has created fragmentation, forcing agencies outside of their comfort zones and think beyond TV to build brands.


    Types of mobile video inventory

    Video on mobile has been around for a while with pre, mid and post-roll - integrating video ads into video. Now advertisers are turning their attention to inserting video ads into applications and mobile sites, where there’s massive scale and publishers. A recent Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) study from April 2014 on mobile video advertising found that 75% of all mobile video ads were in-app.

    Mobile video is in high demand and therefore buy side platforms need to provide buyers with access to massive scale of mobile video enabled ad inventory in order to deliver branding campaigns with audience targeting. The video standard VAST (Video Ad Serving Template), has lacked significant adoption by publishers and support from ad exchanges (few support VAST). The only viable option available to advertisers today that gives them massive scale and reach is HTML5 full-screen ads that run across mobile apps and sites. These run in any MRAID compliant full-screen interstitial on a smartphone that supports HTML5, which today includes all Apple and most Android devices.  That’s over 95% of the global smartphone market.


    How mobile video started

    It’s only a few years ago that a handful of publishers in the UK offered pre, mid and post roll video ads and buys were small and limited to several advertisers. These buys were fully transparent direct deals done via insertion orders on the back of emails or telephones to run on large media and entertainment apps.


    Benefits of programmatic mobile video

    Enter programmatic, an automated technology-driven approach for trading advertising inventory. Platforms that host auctions are called ad exchanges and platforms that automatically bid for inventory on ad exchanges are called Demand-Side Platforms using Real-Time Bidders.

    Ad exchanges that support programmatic Real-Time Bidding, are MRAID (Mobile Rich Media Ad Interface Definition) compliant and support full-screen ad formats for smartphones and tablet devices, provide Demand-Side Platforms with massive scale for global mobile video enabled ad inventory. RTB also provides a richer data environment for trading ad requests. These ad requests pass first party anonymous data that may include demographics, location or other fields that campaigns may use to reach specific audience groups. With the OpenRTB standard, DSPs in theory, can now support a more transparent trading environment that includes features such as white and black listing, exchange choice, domain blocking and IAB categories. This level of transparency and control will be mission critical for brand advertisers as they develop brand safe mobile video options for clients.



    Programmatic video can be traded using the following advertising pricing models: CPM model that delivers impressions that meet specific targeting criteria (this model does not factor in any viewing activity into the pricing model, only delivery) and a CPV model that optimizes towards completed video views as a campaign objective.


    Obstacles remaining

    Mindset shift - Video has traditionally been a premium buy access to a white list of high quality publishers. Programmatic trading or Real-Time Bidding forces a different mindset on the table with a new focus on seeking out audiences across many publishers at massive scale.

    Quality of inventory - TV and online video buyers have been used to buying TV slots and videos on premium channels and publishers via direct buys. There’s an implied expectation that quality of publisher inventory will be a determining factor across mobile video buys for brands. Mobile video buyers may drive programmatic in the direction that video has always taken, direct programmatic deals and private exchanges.

    Audience - Programmatic mobile video is just starting and audience data including demographics remain basic and not widespread outside of USA. TV buyers thinking about integrated campaigns that extend into digital and multi-screen will be seeking options for audience alignment or some sort of common currency that works across all media. The challenge for mobile video is therefore working out how to provide TV buyers with TV-like audiences.

    Transparency - Given the premium nature of video buys, transparency will be high up on the agenda for agencies. Providing visibility across publications, audiences and metrics will be an important lever for driving spend upwards on mobile video.

    Formats - The ideal scenario would be for TV, online and mobile to share the same video without need for additional creative or processing. This would deliver enormous benefit in maintaining consistency that would deliver a well executed integrated marketing communications campaign, leveraging any upfront effort in creative development and deliver reinforcement through a single, common brand message across all screens. In the booming online video advertising space, this is already happening today, the final piece in the loop would for the same to be valid for extending this to mobile.

    Results - There’s a gap between TV and mobile video measurement as both still operate in silos. However, with TV and online budgets now extending onto mobile, there’s a requirement for a concept of cross-screen measurement, not only for obvious metrics such as views but also performance by audience groups common across all screens. That gap would enable TV buyers to fairly compare the performance of a cross-screen campaign and determine the effectiveness by screen.