Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Google Makes Its First Real Stab at Mobile Marketing: AdWords on iPhones

Say this for Google: If the company’s revenue really does contract next quarter, it won’t be because it’s not trying–the company is rolling out a steady stream of tweaks and improvements to goose incremental advertising spend.

The latest: An announcement that advertisers who buy AdWords–Google’s main revenue engine–can now automatically buy mobile advertising, too. The company says AdWords buyers can choose to have their AdWords automatically show up on phones that support “real” Internet browsers like T-Mobile’s G1 phone and Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone. Here’s an example:

These ads will reach a relatively small slice of mobile phone users. But that population will increase rapidly, particularly if Apple really does start selling cut-price phones at Wal-Mart (WMT). Which means that Google (GOOG) really may be the first company to make inroads toward the supposedly-huge-but-so-far-mythical mobile ad market.

Release from Google’s Daniel Rubin:

Today, we’re announcing a new campaign-level option that allows you to extend the reach of your text and image ads to show your AdWords ads on the T-Mobile G1, the iPhone, and other mobile devices that have full (HTML) Internet browsers. This new option will now allow you to display your ads specifically on these devices, create exclusive campaigns for them, and get separate performance reporting. We hope this option will help you more effectively reach your audience with the right message at the right time.

G1 and iPhone ads have many of the same benefits as our standard mobile-format ads, such as allowing you to deliver mobile-specific calls-to-action and reaching your audience when they’re on the go. Showing ads on the G1 and iPhone also have additional advantages for your advertising. Users are performing a lot of searches on these devices, and searches are likely to go up during the holiday season. Last Christmas, the iPhone drove more traffic to Google.com worldwide than any other mobile platform.

Unlike standard mobile ads, you don’t need to format your ads for mobile phones to show your ads on the G1 and iPhone. Because the G1 and iPhone has full Internet browsers, you’ll be able to display your standard AdWords ads and landing pages on these devices without having to modify them.

With this new option, you’re opted-in to show ads on the G1 and iPhone, and you’re also eligible to show on additional devices that use full Internet browsers as these devices enter the market. If you want to change your settings to only show ads on G1s and iPhones or to not show ads on these devices, follow these steps.

If you’re running standard mobile ad formats, they won’t be affected, and they’ll continue to run on mobile phones with mobile (WAP) browsers.”


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