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AdColony’s VP on mobile advertising’s missed opportunity: "We have to make ourselves accountable"

Mobile advertising

Mobile advertising remains 'untapped' – but is it because of inadequate technology or something else? Speaking ahead of The Drum's panel debate at The Drum Arms on mobile advertising, AdColony’s VP, Jon Hook says it’s not technology that’s the problem but complex jargons, buzzword distraction, and a general lack of transparency in the industry preventing its full uptake.

“There are so many jargons and acronyms and we still have to take responsibility for that,” he told The Drum. “Part of [the problem] is having inadequate industry metrics that we now have to make ourselves accountable to. The current viewability standard is embarrassing.”

So how can more visibility be created around this issue to get rid of this roadblock preventing uptake of mobile advertising? For Hook, it is important for marketers to not get too caught up in the latest industry buzzwords like AI or mobile versus other channels. Instead, marketers should focus their attention on consumers in terms of where and how they spend their time and create engaging brand experiences accordingly.

“Typically, you might be building profiles with data that is 12 months old. With mobile, you can get a much more real-time view of who your consumer actually is,” he said. “There’s a huge planning benefit to brands that have the right partners and technology to build a real-time view of their customers."

Procter & Gamble’s (P&G) chief brand officer Marc Pritchard earlier this year heavily criticised the “murky at best, fraudulent at worst” media supply chain and called for more transparency on issues such as viewability and media buying. Since then, Facebook has agreed to be audited by the Media Rating Council (MRC) but for Hook, there are still too many excuses being used.

“There was one where they said if they implement third party viewability tags, it’s going to slow down the user experience and irritate people," he said. "That’s just an excuse. I think as an industry we have to apply the same rule to all partners, be it Facebook or a startup in the UK.”

He added: “Brands are so invested in Facebook and these big social platforms that it’s not an option to simply cut off spend because they are so heavily reliant on them. But that shouldn’t be a reason to not demand transparency from them.”

Hook will be speaking at The Drum’s panel session with AdColony: To quote Sir Martin Sorrell - “mobile’s a multi-billion dollar opportunity still untapped”, so let’s drop all the excuses on 21 March at The Drum Arms pub in London. A panel of experts from Twitter, Google, Dentsu Aegis Network, and Shell will debate issues and opportunities around mobile advertising.

The pub will be The Drum's central point during Advertising Week Europe, offering the latest media and marketing insights.

You can register for the event here.

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