Apple has tweaked its iAd mobile advertising network in an effort to attract more advertisers while Facebook is reportedly planning its first move into mobile advertising for early 2012.
Apple has made changes to the prices it charges for iAd campaigns, reports the Wall Street Journal, and is showing a greater willingness to bargain on minimum spend. Apple is now discussing deals with a spending commitment of US$400,000, according to a Wall Street Journal source. The company originally asked for minimum spends of US$1 million before lowering it to US$500,000.
Launched in July 2010 iAd is Apple’s service for selling ads within mobile apps for iPhones, iPads and iPod Touch devices. Take up has been limited with marketing professionals saying that iAd’s high prices, Apple’s sales tactics and strict control over ad creation have put people off.
The source said there will also be greater flexibility in iAd’s pricing structure. Rather than charging marketers the same every time a user taps on an ad, Apple will put a cap on what it charges. Advertisers are currently charged US$10 for every thousand ad views and US$2 each time an ad is tapped on. In contrast, Google’s AdMob charges between US$4 and US$12 per thousand views, according to ad executives.
Apple has also established a training programme about mobile marketing in conjunction with media buying agency OMD to attract more advertisers. Executives from several big advertisers have already taken part in this training, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Facebook meanwhile is reported by Bloomberg to be preparing to make its first move into mobile advertising next spring. According to sources, the company is looking to tap into the market by the end of March 2012, in order to secure a new source of revenue ahead of a potential IPO.
One potential approach is to put Facebook’s Sponsored Stories ads, which show how users’ friends have interacted with brands, into mobile News Feeds alongside status updates, photos and shared content. Due to the amount of information Facebook can gather about users, advertisers could potentially target advertising more directly than with other mobile advertising channels.