Monday, July 23, 2007

Interpublic going mobile marketing

Interpublic, the global marketing communications group, has launched Ansible, a new independent agency specializing in mobile marketing. Ansible, which IPG created in conjunction with the mobile technology vendor Velti, was born out of the agency holding company''s recently launched Futures Marketing Group.

IPG has tapped Vladimir Edelman, the former head of the mobile marketing firm Soapbox Media and veteran of CBS, ESPN Fox and others, as Ansible''s first chief executive officer. In addition, Larry Harris, the former executive vp, director of integrated marketing for Draftfcb, has signed on as the agency''s new president.

Ansible, which will be based in New York, will work with IPG clients from its agencies across the globe, according to officials, who say that mobile is becoming even more of a priority for marketers.

Mobile is a crucial medium that increasingly bridges traditional media channels to provide fully integrated client solutions. With Interpublic, Aegis, AOL and Microsoft taking position in mobile marketing, its becoming clear that mobile marketing will form an important part of the overall marketing mix strategy for any global communication companies and brand owners. Even China Mobile has applied for an independent advertising license in China to offer comprehensive mobile marketing services directly to its clients cutting out middle man.

There is certainly no stopping mobile marketing taking prime time both in China and on a Global scale. The road ahead for mobile marketing is rosier than ever though I must say that there are still alot of work that needs to be done before it can be a prime media. Without proper measurement to measure the success of any mobile marketing campaigns and the proper mobile media metrics, its unlikely that mobile marketing providers will get the traction that they need. It will still take some time for such measurements and metrics to be developed and alot of standardization process that industry players need to work on.

Whatever it maybe, mobile marketing is definitely in for the long haul and industry players need to work hand in hand to develop it into a mature media. Its going to be exciting to see how all the global operators embracing mobile marketing and how far are they willing to open up their users' database. As far as China is concern, I dont reckon China Mobile would want to open up at this present moment. We just have to wait until China gets its 3G licenses and hopefully with more operators, China Mobile is forced to play ball.

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