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IAB Puts Out Plan to Standardize Mobile Metrics



If you’re running a marketing campaign with no means of measuring the results, you’re wasting your money. Trouble is, with the marketing world changing as fast as it is, we haven’t even developed a baseline for what’s considered a success in Twitter or Facebook and mobile is even further behind. Because of this, the Interactive Advertising Bureau and the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) have put together a set of measurement guidelines that they’re hoping will become the standard for all mobile advertising.

Randall Rothenberg, President & CEO, IAB says;

“Consumers have brought mobile devices into their daily lives at an astonishing pace. The ‘Mobile Web Advertising Measurement Guidelines’ will give marketers greater assurance that their advertising messages are reaching consumers on these mobile devices and that’s critical for continued growth.”

Cameron Clayton, Senior Vice President of mobile and digital applications at The Weather Channel, co-chair of the IAB Mobile Advertising Committee and member of the Board of Directors of the MMA had this to add;

“By adopting these guidelines, publishers and ad servers will all count impressions in a consistent, rigorous way, helping assure marketers and agencies that they are getting what they pay for when they purchase mobile Web advertising.”

The objectives of the “Mobile Web Advertising Measurement Guidelines” include:

  • Defining the mobile Web ad impression
  • Creating a common definition and methodology that will become widely adopted in the U.S. and globally for counting mobile Web ad impressions
  • Encouraging U.S. mobile Web ad servers to have their impression counts audited by an independent third party
  • Distinguishing between the established IAB Web ad impression and the mobile Web ad impression, and when each metric is appropriate
  • Providing marketers and agencies with greater clarity and certainty (via the auditing process) that key metrics used for buying mobile Web ads are methodologically sound and meet the highest standards available to the media industry
  • Reducing levels of discrepancies and spurring the industry’s growth by offering Internet publishers and ad servers a consistent, rigorous way to count the delivery of ad impressions

Certainly, the idea of standardizing metrics is a good thing but I must say, I didn’t realize the complexity of the issue until I read the new guidelines. I had always assumed that mobile worked pretty much the same way as banner ads when it came to click-throughs. Not so says IAB’s Joe Laszlo in a recent ClickZ interview.

“The way that mobile networks handle data is different, and mobile device capabilities are different. They can’t quite handle things like cookies the way PCs can, and mobile network operators play a much larger role in passing along data, which makes it harder to measure.”

Mobile isn’t going away, so it’s time to put this plan into action. If you know your WAP Header Controls from your Activity-based Filtration, you should read and comment on the proposed guidelines. You’ll find them at the IAB website. You have until Friday, December 10 to make your opinion heard.