Posted March 27, 2008 4:46 pm by with 5 comments

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Now here’s the kind of prediction that I like to hear: eMarketer’s John du Pre Gauntt says that “2007 was not ‘the year of mobile marketing’ that it was advertised to be, and 2008 won’t be either.” I don’t have anything against mobile marketing itself, I’m just tired of the hype. So a down-to-earth look at the future of mobile marketing is what I want.

eMarketer’s key points:

  • Text-message–based campaigns will dominate
  • Mobile marketing affects many different industries—and it affects them all differently.
  • Consumers are resistant, especially to targeting based on personal information that their phone and/or provider will store.
  • Most mobile users are still paying for nearly all their data services, making them even less likely to welcome advertising on their phones.

emarketer: analysis of mobile advertising spend by format

The report also addresses the possibility of advertising revenues subsidizing subscription rates. This seems like the solution to a lot of problems: the mobile companies still get paid, customers get low enough rates to afford data services and advertisers get their creative seen.

On the other hand, advertisers might desire better targeting, customers are opposed to receiving more advertising and mobile companies would probably prefer to continue to charge both advertisers and customers at current rates. The eMarketer report realistically concludes that “Before mobile marketing can truly get moving, many obstacles will have to be overcome.”


  • I hope these advertisers leave my phone alone.

    I’ll pay more for no advertising! That’s just too far IMO, mobile advertising…come on. It just makes me think less of the companies – they can get me online, on the road, through the television, on my business and home phone, on the radio, in malls etc.. Leave my phone alone! Hopefully it won’t go anywhere – like telemarketing it will get slowly banned. I guess it won’t hurt to reach people why they can.

  • PS3

    Too true Jayson. We get junk post, spam mail and TV is flooded with ads, don’t let them get to mobiles as well.

    Just out of curiosity, can people get hold of mobile phone lists in the same way as they can with e-mail lists? Hope not!

  • I don’t see how the mobile market is a prime target for marketing. With TV and Internet ads, you are advertising to people who are using 15″+ sized screens. With the internet people are usually in search mode, and are more apt to click on adverts. But with the mobile industry, people have a lot less screen space, and less apt to put up with advertising on their screens. I know I don’t want to have to click around, or scroll around images that are more than likely taking up 100% of my screen.

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  • I agree that there are many obstacles to overcome, but I think 2008 is the year of the mobile, depending on how you make that definition.

    This year we’ve seen the iphone prove that there is a massive latent demand for mobile media and utility, and with the introduction of the Google Android stack later this year, we’ll see increased competition in pricing, performance and quality. This is definitely the year in which the rules of mobile media change in my opinion, even if it will take until 2010 for this ‘potential’ to become mainstream usage.

    I wrote a longer post about it here if you’re interested