With more and more readers preferring to consume content on their mobile device, publishers are witnessing firsthand the importance of having a strategy for their content which is optimised for mobile. One of the most common questions we hear publishers ask is how do they effectively go about transforming their print ads for their mobile audience?
Since mobile screen size, functionality, and reading habits differ drastically from desktop it is absolutely crucial for publishers to move away from the print replica mindset. The good news is that mobile advertising strategies are breathing new life (and new revenue!) into digital publishing.
Below are a few tips you should keep in mind to maximise your advertising efforts when transforming your print publication to an optimised mobile web app.
Location Location Location
When you are up against small screen mobile devices, the concept of a full page, half page, or quarter page ad becomes meaningless. Instead, it makes more sense to value ads in terms of hierarchical placements within the mobile site.
To determine how this hierarchy is achieved, it is first important to understand how the fundamental structure of a publication differs when published as a print replica edition vs a mobile-first edition. A publication that has been optimised well for mobile should be broken down and reformatted so that it can follow a user-friendly layout, regardless of the device that it is being viewed on. Readers should also be able to quickly navigate between different section categories.
Leading ads and sponsored content can receive priority placement on the home page before the crease so that they are seen immediately, or receive a targeted placement within a category of their choosing.
Banner ads are the simplest and most recognisable form of mobile advertising, and can also be customised for each section category. When you place the ads with the user experience in mind, banner ads can be a highly appealing and unobtrusive option for your sponsors and can allow their ads to achieve more visibility than they would have had tucked between the pages of your replica edition. Dynamic animating banner ads will draw the reader’s eye, and are an upsell incentive for your print advertisers.
Boost engagement by targeting mobile habits
Before you go about re-imagining your ads for mobile, it is first important to understand that readers will engage with media and content in drastically different ways on their mobile phones than on they do on desktop. Google insights from a recent report show that people are increasingly choosing to consume content on their smartphones in short bursts throughout the day. They call these brief periods of engagement ‘micro-moments’.
While the overall time we are spending consuming digital media on mobile devices has risen to 3 hours a day in 2015 (compare this to only 18 minutes in 2008), the time we are spending per session is on average only 1 minute, 10 seconds!
It is important for publishers to keep this behaviour in mind when developing their mobile ad strategy. The mobile space is not bound by the same spacial limitations of print, allowing brands to add more content and media to their adverts. At the same time, it is also crucial that brands communicate their marketing message to mobile readers as succinctly as possible. Just because advertisers can invest in sponsored mobile articles instead of just small print ads, it doesn’t mean that mobile users will want to read through paragraphs and paragraphs of text to hear their message.
The recent boom in mobile video popularityis testiment to the power this type media has to drive reader engagement, and it has seen many magazine publishers upsell video as an ad incentive to their brands with great success. According to a recent Ooyala mobile video report, in Q2 of 2015, mobile phones (34%) and tablets (15%) combined for 49% of video ad impressions — up from 38% in Q1 of 2015. (Comparitively, publishers saw PC impressions drop from 62% to 50% in the previous quarter.)
It is this trend that is driving brands to invest their marketing dollars in mobile video, with eMarketer estimating that by 2019 mobile’s share of total digital video ad spend will reach 47.7%, up from just over one-third in 2015.
For publishers who are aiming to see improved ad engagement and click through rates in their metrics, including mobile video is definitely one option that should not be overlooked.
Incorporate smartphone functionality into the ad experience
Mobile devices offer one major benefit over the desktop medium for publishers, and that is the ability they have to draw upon the native functionality of a mobile or smartphone device to improve and personalise the reading experience.
When you consider the fact that only 9% of users will stay on a mobile site or app if it doesn’t satisfy their needs (for example, to find information or navigate quickly), it makes sense for publishers to make the most of all of the tools in their arsenal to ensure that readers get value out of their publication’s advertisements.
Including advertiser buttons in sponsored articles can transform a brand’s ad into a much more engaging, targetted experience, and will facilitate a seamless flow of consumers through the sales funnel. Adding trackable buttons which allow readers to tap through to an advertiser’s website, tap to call or book, or tap for directions to the nearest store are HUGE incentives to upsell to your advertisers. Considering that 61% of smartphone users are more likely to buy from companies whose mobile sites or apps customise information to their location, your advertisers are bound to see a greater return on their mobile marketing investment.
These are only just a few of the easy, actionable ad strategies publishers can leverage when they take their magazine mobile. The great thing about publishing to mobile is that your advertising strategy will be limited only by your creativity.
However, not all publishers have the time, resources, or technical knowhow to come up with a mobile solution for their publication which sets your brand up for growth in the digital space.
To help you get a leg up over your competition, Realview have just launched PARTICA– a new mobile-first publishing and content marketing solution that was created in response to the advertising challenges faced by publishers world wide. Click through to our presentation where you will discover how you can transform your print ads for mobile audiences, so you can start profiting today!