Mobile Advertising Prices Climb… But What About Their Value?

Mobile advertising’s last stand in the 4th quarter of 2012 was an impressive one. Mobile advertising prices jumped significantly during the final three months of the year amidst a holiday shopping season that was certainly more mobile than any previous season.

But did the spike in prices correspond to their value? It’s tough to say according to the data released this week by MoPub.

During this past December at the peak of mobile’s biggest spending season, Adweek summarizes, “rich media mobile ads cost 1.6 times as much as their static counterparts but only returned 1.2 times the clicks.”

“In our view, [mobile rich media ads] are not quite meeting the expectations everyone had going into it,” said MoPub’s director of product marketing Elain Szu.

But all the news isn’t disappointing.

MoPub’s early January numbers, in addition to brand advertisers’ attentions, suggest that things may be getting better for mobile and staying that way. In past years, the first week of January has seen a complete drop-off in ad spend from the weeks leading up to Christmas, Szu said. That’s not the case this time.

“By looking at the fourth quarter — which is the big advertising season — it’s evident that mobile is catching up to what we already know is happening,” adds Szu. “Advertisers really looked to mobile during the holidays, which validates the channel and the overall marketing trend.”