SAN FRANCISCO – Resistance to spam and irrelevant messages are two reasons why mobile consumers fail to engage with mobile travel ads, according to a new study carried out by mobile research firm On Device on behalf of mobile marketing company MobPartner.
“Once initial barriers are overcome and trust is established, users appear eager to make use of travel-related ads to get information and even book travel”
On Device spoke with 1000 mobile users in August about how they engaged in travel research and planning, both on mobile and laptop, and what their response was to mobile travel ads along their journey.
Some 38 percent of respondents who had not yet engaged with a mobile ad related to travel, were reluctant to do so because they were worried about spam, according to the study, while 33 percent said such ads were irrelevant to them.
However, the likelihood of responding to such advertisements was shown to increase once users had engaged with a mobile travel ad and they trusted the source.
Some 32 percent indicated they would click on a mobile travel ad if it came from a trusted brand. And as many as 25 percent of those who had responded to an ad had gone ahead and made a vacation-related purchase. Users who trust the source also are more willing to give out their personal information, the study noted.
Overall, however, only 17 percent of those polled found mobile travel ads very effective, with as many as 52 percent not sure. But the approval rating of such ads soared among those users who went ahead and clicked on one (33 percent) or even booked a vacation-related purchase using such an ad (41 percent).
“Trusted brands, good offers and relevance are the biggest drivers for engagement with mobile ads related to travel,” says Alexandra Travlos, client service analyst at On Device Research in charge of the study.
“Once initial barriers are overcome and trust is established, users appear eager to make use of travel-related ads to get information and even book travel,” says Djamel Agaoua , CEO of MobPartner.
“This speaks to the need for offering truly helpful and relevant travel ads.”
Among the most viewed travel ads were mobile video ads, with 33 percent of those who responded to an ad viewing mobile video. About 32 percent said they responded to an ad within a mobile game or application, and 30 percent engaged with a traditional banner ad.
Of those that clicked on a mobile ad, 29 percent visited a mobile website as a result, and 19 percent ended up downloading an app.
Other interesting results of the study show that, although overall the smartphone is the top device for researching travel, most people still prefer to do early research such as planning and booking on a laptop. Reasons given ranged from “It’s more secure,” “It’s easier to compare sites,” the ability to print, and the fact that many companies still do not have optimized mobile web sites.
Not surprisingly, the majority of respondents begin to think about their travel plans two to three months before they intend to travel, and price and location are the biggest factors affecting their booking decisions.
And the most frequently visited travel sites are weather sites (58 percent) and comparison shopping sites such as Expedia and Kayak (48 percent).
MobPartner is a mobile marketing company based in Paris and San Francisco that offers mobile marketers sophisticated advertising & monetization techniques. Customers only pay for measurable performance and publishers monetize with revenue generating and contextually relevant ad units offering high eCPMs. MobPartner was recently named a Deloitte Technology Fast 50 company in France.
About On Device Research
On Device Research is a global mobile sample and research provider co-founded by Alistair Hill and Tim Cleminson. It has offices in London, Dubai and Singapore.