At the OMMA mobile event yesterday in NYC, mobile agency execs discussed the evolution of the mobile ad space, while offering views on how the channel may evolve in the near future following the introduction of things like HTML5 and Apple’s iAd.
Despite the hype surrounding the mobile app space, mobile agencies suggest new technologies could help “turn marketers’ attention away from the crowded branded app space.” With surprising “anti-app” sentiment, panelists warned advertisers not to dive into the app space just yet, and instead place emphasis on formulating clear mobile strategies before deciding which channels are best suited.
“Our initial conversations with clients always start with them getting excited about applications,” said Jared Hopfer, marketing manager at mobile agency Mobext. “As an agency we have to calm them down and talk about the types of functionality that an app would offer that other experiences wouldn’t, and weigh the relative benefits.”
Apple’s iAd team is working hard at targeting agencies as well, and it seems to be working. Patrick Collins, CEO of agency 5th Finger expressed little doubt the iAd network would provide a superior solution to ad formats currently available in mobile marketing arsenals. “I think we all know that when iAd is launched we’ll see a lot of very interesting stuff coming through that will really excite brand marketers.”
The debate between mobile apps vs. the mobile Web and Flash vs HTML5 rages on, but it seems the underlying impression from an agency point-of-view is in favor of HTML5 and the mobile Web.
CEO of mobile ad network Millennial Media, said he too believed growth in mobile use was coming from within the browser. “We see a lot of ad impressions, and I think the winning platform is HTML5. It’s going to take three years or so, and there’s no doubt applications are all the rage today, but I think the browser platform will win in the end.”