IPC launches scaleable mobile ad platform

IPC Media is offering advertisers without fully optimised mobile sites a platform that makes their branded content accessible across all mobile devices.

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IPC hopes its new mobile tool can show advertisers how they can engage with readers across all its brands.

The Premium Content Suite pairs the publisher’s editorial content with brands’ marketing messages in an ad unit optimised for mobile devices. It means those advertisers yet to optimise their inventory for smartphones can use IPC’s platform to create standalone mobile ads featuring videos, galleries, offers or a social feed.

Content in the suite can be accessed through QR codes on print ads, on-pack, point-of sale and banners.

The Marie Claire publisher believes conversations with advertisers will move to “what can be done at point-of-sale” as it and its rivals such as Bauer Media and Immediate Media assume greater control of campaigns than ad networks. The lack of inventory has forced publishers to sell mobile advertising directly through ad networks in the past, but publishers are now pushing to work more closely with advertisers and open up new revenue channels from mobile.

IPC’s head of digital advertising Sam Finlay, who is spearheading the initiative, says if consumers can more easily access content from a rival title that displays more effectively on a handheld device, they will. Yet the vast majority of brands in the UK – 57 per cent according to IAB research – do not own a site optimised for mobile devices.

He adds: “The lack of [branded] optimised sites is a well known talking point in the industry. Because all our brands are optimised for smartphones we’re packaging all that content up for advertisers so that they don’t have to wrestle with it in terms of how they deliver their campaigns to different devices. The campaigns they develop don’t have to be part of bigger deals with us either. They can be standalone marketing messages.”

The product is one of the company’s first tangible moves to boost digital revenues since overhauling its advertising offering last month (16 April) with what it claims are a “next generation” of ad products, research projects and services (see box).

IPC’s mobile push is part of paradigm shift in the publishing industry to serving ads optimised for handheld devices. It hopes to mitigate the need for separate, fully optimised mobile sites or apps to generate revenues from visits via mobile devices. Moreover such formats are giving consumers much more control over their ad experience, meaning it’s near impossible for the ads they interact with on a mobile device to be launched by mistake.

IPC’s Inspired Conversations advertising proposition includes the following:

  • Amplify – a digital ad product that combines IPC’s editorial content with advertiser creative and “amplifies” it to a targeted audience of up to 40m consumers.
  • Catalyst – a marketing product developed in partnership with PeerIndex to let brands capitalise on the reach of IPC Media’s social channels.
  • Research – the publishing is conducting three research programs looking into how consumers are engaging with its brands across all channels.

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