How to Pick a Mobile Ad Type

Sep 06, 2016
By: Marissa Camilli

Before choosing an ad format, be sure to clearly identify your campaign goals. What is your monetization goal? Who is your target audience? Is it more about brand awareness or performance based advertising? How subtle or interactive do you want the ads? Knowing these answers will make choosing the right ad much easier.

Interactive ads are the newest form of ad, and are not yet widely used. Still, they are proven to increase user attention and brand awareness. Interactive ads are ads that function with user input, whether to test run a game for a couple seconds or reveal a coupon for a store. These ads are the next big thing in mobile advertising, so while it is difficult to set one up now, it is important to keep in mind for future mobile advertising campaigns.

The banner ad is a classic form of mobile advertising. Usually around 300×50 pixels, it lies either at the bottom of the screen or the top. It is less intrusive than most of the mobile ads, but unfortunately it has a high accidental click rate. Additionally, banner ads are least likely to translate into conversions, in part because of “banner blindness,” which is when users unconsciously resist banner ads. This can be overcome with well-designed and engaging ads.

Interstitials are an incredibly effective form of mobile ad. These ads take up the entire screen, and when done well only pop up in between pages. This ad is especially ideal for gaming apps, in which the ad can be placed between levels. It takes more effort to design this app because of the size increase. But this ad has high impressions and high conversions. In addition the larger space permits more creativity in the app, which in turn makes this ad more memorable to users.

A phone displaying an intersitial ad

Expandable ads are a combination of banner ads and interstitial ads. They start as a banner ad, but when the user clicks or rolls over them they expand into an ad that fills the entire screen like an interstitial ad. Since this ad is more interactive than the banner ad, it has a higher conversion rate. Like the interstitial ad, the expandable ad allows for more creativity in design. This is a great way to create a larger ad without being too invasive.

Video ads are becoming much more popular in mobile advertising. Though these ads are more expensive to produce, users respond well to their interactive and engaging nature. The videos last no longer than 30 seconds, and are particularly good at increasing brand awareness. In order to effectively use a video ads a few measures, like firing autoplay video without audio and only showing the video after the banner has been clicked, mitigate the risk of irritating users with the ad.

Native ads are the least intrusive mobile ad format. It still maintains a high click-through rate because of its ability to target users based on the content they are consuming. User engagement is also higher with this form of ad. Although this ad does require more flexibility in format, it is a high performing ad that reaches users well.

Three phones showing native ads on Facebook

All of these ads help attract clicks and installs, though it is important to appropriately utilize each one to its best function based on previously established campaign goals. Ultimately, it’s the creativity and originality of the ad that will attract users’ attention. This is only the beginning of understanding mobile advertising, so be sure to check out other resources, like this article about different mobile advertising stats, to make sure you pick the best ad for your site.

Marissa Camilli
By Marissa Camilli
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