Joseph Thomas

Tablets are an adverting goldmine, as consumers switch their eyes from televisions to slates. Tablets are an ideal platform for delivering rich, multimedia ads and are advantageous for marketers. Marketing Master Lori H. Schwartz, Chief Technology Catalyst at McCann Worldgroup, kicks off a lively discussion on advertising best practices for tablets at ad:tech San Francisco.

Presenters include Diaz Nesamoney, President and CEO of Jivox, Jonathan Haber, Chief Innovation Officer of OMD, Hans Deutmeyer, Vice President of HBO, and Gene Liebel, Chief Strategy Officer for Huge.

Schwartz begins the session by noting tablet size matters. At Mobile World Congress, Schwartz said she saw every tablet size imaginable. A tablet’s size and design impact what consumers do with the device and the type of content they consume.

Interestingly, Schwartz notes music is the number one downloaded piece of content on tablets. Music apps are the most popular type of apps, but magazines are quickly gaining traction. She notes there will be an explosion of second screen solutions, which engage users while they are watching television. Viggle is one such example, which gives users loyalty points when they watch live television.

Tablets and Advertising

Nesamoney estimates there will be 150 million tablets by the end of the year. For brands, tablets are the ultimate engagement platform for advertising. It offers an immersive experience - the tablet gets 100 percent of a user’s attention. Moreover, he notes tablets are a personal media device… try taking an iPad away from someone.

Nesamoney claims apps are becoming ads themselves. Leverage the app to deliver a branded message and useful content that can increase engagement and trust. On the other hand, ads are becoming apps, too. As ads become more interactive, users build deeper engagement. These interactive ads (iAds) have several elements, including videos, image galleries, special offers and social integration. The ad suddenly becomes an app and users are staying engaged longer than they are with typical display ads.

Do these interactive ads offer a better return, even though they cost more to make? According to Nesamoney, a standalone ad had less than 0.5 percent interaction, whereas an interactive ad had 2 to 4 percent interaction. Videos, animations, games, and galleries spearhead user engagement and improve the user experience.

Nesamoney notes creating interactive ads is becoming easier, as more companies create Content Management Systems for interactive ads. Marketers can graphically move ad elements, create backgrounds, and lay the ads out for different devices without knowing any code. Granted, marketers do have to pay for the premium service.

To succeed, marketers need to educate, entertain and engage users. Create more content-centric ads that deliver the brand message. Most importantly, ensure ads offer users great value and do not disrupt their experience.

Mobile Advertising and HBO Go

According to Deutmeyer, the video landscape is very fragmented and constantly changing. Competition is at an all-time high, as users have multiple providers to choose from. According to HBO, the design should be in the background and place the content in the forefront of the user experience.

Since launch, HBO received over six million app downloads. Deutmeyer says about 85 percent of mobile users are watching more HBO on their home television. Approximately 81 percent of subscribers said they were very satisfied and others indicate it offers added value to their existing subscription.

Deutmeyer says to improve overall product quality, have product designers and engineers work collaboratively, rather than “creative.” In concluding, Deutmeyer advises marketers to leverage the benefits of each platform, keeping the app’s content in the spotlight.

This article is part of Allvoices’ series on ad:tech, the largest digital marketing and technology conferences and expositions. Check out for more of Allvoices’ ad:tech San Francisco event coverage. This series is supported by ad:tech.