Report: Local-Mobile Ad Targeting Offers Big Performance Lift

Mobile ad network xAd joined the “year in review” club, releasing a report showcasing a year’s worth of data from ad campaigns on its network. The bottom line: location targeting, whether in search or display, improves performance over standard mobile search and display advertising.

xAd performance metrics

The network offers a range of location targeting types that go well beyond conventional “geotargeting.” The company told me that a majority of its national advertisers are now using one or more flavors of advanced location targeting. These include location-based behavioral targeting, audience targeting and more sophisticated geofencing.

These “geotargeting 2.0″ techniques produce even better performance for marketers. And a majority of advertisers using these more sophisticated approaches are also aggressively pursuing location based “conquesting” vs. their competitors.

xAd performance metrics

The company says that national advertisers have rapidly moved from simple geotargeting (city, state, zip) to these more sophisticated forms of targeting. Indeed, in Q1 last year 64 percent of the network’s advertisers were using standard geotargeting. By Q4 81 percent had adopted one of the more advanced types of location targeting.

xAd location metrics

In the report xAd offers a Calvin Klein apparel (underwear) case study that nicely shows how brand/awareness marketing and direct response can be combined in a single mobile campaign. The mobile banner showed the brand and models wearing the underwear. The landing page directed shoppers to local Macy’s stores where they could buy the product.

During store hours users were shown nearby Macy’s store locations; after hours they were directed to an e-commerce site. Shoppers were targeted within a 10-mile geofence around Macy’s stores. The campaign also utilized audience and behavioral targeting. According to xAd, “the campaign exceeded the clients CTR benchmark by 26 percent while helping to increase local sales during the campaign period.”

The report also includes a list of top mobile consumer-search categories drawn from activity on its publisher network. Restaurants and Travel were the top two mobile search categories for 2012. Among national advertisers, Telecom, Financial Services (i.e., banks, insurance) and Travel were the top three categories.

xAd top categories

There was no breakdown of smartphone vs. tablet activity in the report. However last year xAd, Telmetrics and Nielsen released a range of very interesting data about mobile consumer behavior on smartphones and tablets in three verticals: Restaurants, Autos and Travel.

Those data were previously written up here:

Related Topics: Channel: Strategy | Mobile Marketing | Statistics: Mobile Marketing | Statistics: Popularity & Usage


About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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