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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : July 25, 2011

YouGov: Mobile users ignore annoying, intrusive ads

Smartphone users see ads on their devices all the time, but are they paying them any attention? The findings of a recent YouGov survey in the UK reveal that although mobile users tolerate ads, most ignore them and find them intrusive.

by Helen Leggatt

logoYouGov.jpgAwareness of ads on smartphones is high. Almost half of Apple users (46%), 42% of O2 customers and 40% of 3 customers remember seeing advertising on their mobile device.

But, and it's a big but for advertisers, the vast majority of consumers turn a blind eye to these ads. YouGov discovered a whopping 88% ignore ads in apps and 86% ignore ads on the mobile web. Overall over three-quarters (79%) say ads on their mobile devices are irritating.

Just 5% of those surveyed said that they thought that advertising on mobile devices was a good idea.

Basic banners are the most recognized format of advert with 87% seeing them while browsing the mobile Internet, and 80% while using apps. When browsing, 63% notice recommended links to search, 51% notice rollover banners and 47% remember seeing special offers.

According to YouGov's online survey of over 2,000 Brits, the most effective way for advertisers to reach smartphone users is by embedding ads into apps, with a third (33%) of respondents recognizing placements every time they use an app, and almost 1 in 5 recalling ads on apps they use daily.

"On the face of it, it looks very bleak indeed for mobile advertising with high consumer awareness, but equally high resentment, apathy and inaction," said Adele Gritten, Head of Media Consulting at YouGov.

"But the research shows that mobile ads really can provide brands with an effective vehicle to engage directly with audiences and drive actions."

Just over a quarter of respondents said they would welcome more advertising if it offered money off deals or special offers and 21% said they don't mind ads relevant to them. Gritten advises marketers not to rely on high "spam volumes" of mobile advertising and that money-off deals are a popular proposition.

"Marketers need to harness the higher level of personal engagement that mobile users have with their handsets to provide them with something truly unique, relevant and interesting," said Gritten.

In other research from YouGov, figures show that growth in smartphone ownership in the UK has stalled over the last two quarters.

Tags: advertising, mobile advertising, mobile application, mobile marketing, mobile web, smartphone adoption, UK

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