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Upside for Mobile Marketing and Advertising

Like most segments of the mobile phone services industry, the Asia-Pacific region leads the world in mobile marketing and advertising. Accelerating growth will see nearly $7.7 billion -- and more than $16 billion globally -- spent there in 2011.

"Spending on mobile marketing and advertising in 2009 worldwide is at least flat compared to 2008 if not slightly growing," says ABI Research senior analyst Jeff Orr.

That's very encouraging compared to the numbers for advertising in most other media. It's less money per campaign, spent more intelligently, with greater benefit per dollar.

Why has mobile marketing and advertising been more widely adopted in some Asian countries than elsewhere? Particularly in the most broadband-enabled countries -- Japan and South Korea -- SMS text messaging, the downloading of ad-supported games and applications, and the mobile web were adopted widely and quickly by consumers.

People understood how to use these services and rapidly built them into their lifestyles. Add a cultural predisposition to becoming a fan of the latest popular trends, and you have a consumer receptive to mobile marketing.

Orr notes that successful mobile marketing demands a new way of thinking about ad campaigns. "Mobile advertising is intrinsically more targeted than ads in conventional media or even online."

It also offers much greater potential for interactivity: it's really a conversation with your customer, one that can allow the consumer to take direct purchasing action. And it offers extremely accurate measurement of campaign results.

Despite its intrinsically lower campaign cost, however, even mobile advertising is not immune from the recession. If an advertiser had mobile in their experimental budget, then it has been cut. But if mobile was already an established part of the marketing mix, spending has been maintained or even increased for 2009.

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