That famous saying, “There’s an app for that,” may soon have to be revised to read: “There’s an ad for that.”
Through its new iAd program, Apple is now placing ads in some of the 225,000 available iPhone applications. Look out, iPad users — you’ll get your share of iAds later this year.
Introduced in April, iAd has already garnered more than $60 million in advertising, according to Apple CEO Steve Jobs.[more]
To make iAd advertising as effective as possible, Apple is looking to mesh interaction with emotion, as Jobs notes above. That’s why Apple is reportedly “studying the buying habits” of 150 million iTune users so it can target its mobile ads and compete with the likes of Google, known for its ability to make ads relevant.
Apple already has signed up AT&T, Best Buy, Nissan, JCPenney, and Unilever as iAd advertisers, according to Bloomberg Businessweek.
Unilever, for one, is impressed with iAd’s targeting capabilities. Rob Candelino, marketing director at Unilever, tells the magazine that the company is working on a campaign promoting its Dove Men+Care soap and is using iAd to target married men in their late thirties with children.
“Apple then overlays that with the iTunes information and targets quite well an quite surgically,” says Candelino. Apple provides Unilever with the ability to target, but it does not share information about its unique users.
The fact that 5 billion applications have been downloaded represents access to a mobile audience that advertisers would likely find very valuable. As we’ve reported previously, some download numbers are staggering, going into the millions.
To avoid running into privacy issues, Apple allows customers to opt out of receiving the mobile ads based on iTunes download history or location. Still, plenty of consumers will probably accept them. That’s why major marketers are looking at the iAd platform as one more way to break through clutter in the mobile market with their brand messages.