Crafting a mobile-friendly advertising and marketing strategy

Figuring out a mobile content strategy early in the game is essential for businesses.

Posted on Nov 12, 2013 by YuMe

Whether crafting mobile video ads or figuring out how to make a website more friendly for smartphones, organizations need to very quickly figure out what kind of strategy they are taking into marketing and advertising. Forming a smart strategy will extend beyond design and content development, Forbes Contributor Jayson DeMers wrote. Accepting the chance by embracing "mobile-first" will be one of the best moves a business can make to bring itself into the future, he said.

"The paradigm shift started with design," he said. "The old approach to design for mobile was simple: create a website that worked for users on standard computers (e.g. for the 'large screen'). Then get creative and find ways to scale it down for mobile devices. For sites that required more effort than simply being made smaller, designs could be simplified or made more "tappable" as an extension of the touch screen environment."

More than ever, searches and Web browsing is taking place on smaller screens such as smartphones and tablets. DeMers said organizations can make longer-form content work now but will likely need to take a forward-thinking approach into the future of crafting video ads online. Desktops and laptops will remain a player for years to come, but the proliferation of these devices is more than a simple trend.

Businesses will need to acknowledge the tension between long-form and short-form content, he said. While the assumption is longer content can go in-depth into a subject, DeMers said search engine algorithms will work to favor videos which are likely viewed and shared more. The same goes for articles as well, as it will remain to be seen if people are still interested in reading a 1,000 word piece compared to a much shorter one.

It remains to be seen if or when this change will affect video ads on mobile devices, as data from the Jun Group found that 54 percent of mobile video ads are still 30 seconds or longer and 32 percent are 90 seconds in length. This goes against the current through that users are less than willing to view longer ads or marketing videos on their gadgets. Marketing Charts cited other research from FreeWheel which found video ads on these mobile devices delivered a 5 percent engagement rate versus 2.4 percent on desktops, highlighting just how important it is for companies to plan for this change up moving into the future.

Targeting will be key moving forward
No matter what the length of a mobile video ad is, organizations will need to be sure it is getting to the right people. DeMers said mobile strategies and content marketing often fall short in the area of targeting, but it is essential for enterprises to know what percentage of their audience is on mobile devices, how they consume content, where they are prone to finding videos or content and what activities they do online.

"The greater the depth in terms of your understanding of your audience's mobile habits, the more compelling your content will be," DeMers wrote. "But specifically, understanding the makeup of their mobile universe will help you create content that feels native – rather than retroactively shoehorned to fit in."

Proper formatting of any content on mobile devices will be key, he wrote, as there will likely be a shorter attention span. This means getting to the point of the content quickly and efficiently, use large and easy to read fonts if there are words on the screen and have great visual content whenever possible. Mobile video ads are a medium that can that can definitely be taken advantage of, but organizations must form a strategy early.