in Operators, Services

GSM Association and Mobile Advertising

On May 22nd a press release from GSM Association states that it will push for a “common standard, measurement, and code of conduct for Mobile Advertisement”.

You may want to read the original press release by following this link.

The first thing I was wondering about while reading the Press Release is why the GSMA is willing to promote such standards.

There is no doubt the Mobile Advertising has a big appeal for everybody in this market and a lot of players are approaching these services.

Reading the document you will find an interesting sentence: “the mobile industry, the advertising industry and the content industry need to come together to better define what advertising should look like on a mobile phone and how its effectiveness should be measured”.

This sounds really as a tough task for GSMA which seems to be willing to coordinate the effort. In this market there are really big fishes and even if GSMA is not really small I think it cannot compete with the giants in the content and advertising business. The first question to answer is why GSMA is willing to take this effort in an industry that they don’t really know.
Here is the next interesting sentence: “The GSMA intends to ensure that standards established include metrics for measuring the effectiveness of mobile adverts and for optimising the commercial models and formats of adverts for different kinds of mobile content”

For the first time in their history content and advertising industry will have the opportunity to measure the effectiveness of their products. The mobile phone is a connected device by definition and will be definitively be able to collect informations about what ads and contents customers have viewed on their mobiles and sending those to other entities.

GSMA also says that “The Programme will also promote codes of conduct to facilitate the development of marketing techniques that will enhance, rather than diminish, the mobile user’s experience”.

Well, that’s a good start, but I would like that the code of conduct regulates also the usage of the data collected from customers.

If it is true, and it is, that the mobile phone is the “fourth screen” for customers we cannot forget that it is a connected screen with a return channel that may enable new services based on advertising models or may be used for collecting data from customers.

I do think that Mobile Advertising may be good for customers. In some way it may helps to lower the prices of both mobile phones and mobile services. A regulation may prove to be necessary in this field but the mobile phone is such a different medium that it exposes the customer to some risks.

Hope these risks will be taken in considerations by this GSMA programme.

Why do I blog this? This is an interesting subject. Not yet made up my mind on the whole scenario.