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Friday, October 14, 2011

App developers can still make money from mobile advertising

Mark Bridge writes:

When I was a youngster, evangelists preached the gospel. Not the gospel according to Steve Jobs, Bart Simpson or Oprah Winfrey. The gospel of Jesus the Christ. That was all. That’s what the word meant.

In recent years, the word ‘evangelist’ has evolved to gain a wider meaning. We have Product evangelists. Customer evangelists. Developer evangelists. Technology evangelists. Even Word of Mouth evangelists (which sounds rather like being an ‘evangelism evangelist’, I reckon). Anyway, I’m sure you get the picture.

Terence Eden of mobile ad network InMobi isn’t called an evangelist. He’s Developer Community Manager... but his enthusiasm for the mobile internet and his employer would put many so-called evangelists to shame.

A couple of weeks ago he was at Over The Air, leading a session about mobile advertising entitled ‘I may not make you a millionaire - but I will pay for your beer’ - and last week he was introducing a similar topic at Droidcon UK.

I caught up with Terence after he’d discussed the ‘Reality of Mobile Advertising’ and started our conversation by talking about InMobi, which describes itself as the world’s largest independent mobile advertising network.

“We’re currently serving something like 43 billion adverts every single month”, he said, “and that number is growing and growing. We’re active in over 165 countries and we’re helping make developers an awful lot of money”.

I asked about the reality of news stories that suggested developers could make a small fortune from a single idea. The reality, Terence explained, was rather different.

“The market place is incredibly crowded now. To have your app stand out from anything else and to get so many downloads… you have to be really lucky for that to happen. A much better strategy is to make your own luck, which means make sure that your app is continuing to earn you money. In-app advertising means that you are paid every time someone clicks on an ad rather than just one 59p payment every time they download it.”

As well as encouraging developers to put advertisements within applications, Terence also explained the benefits of creating ads.

“Advertising on mobile is absolutely perfect for mobile apps because you know the advert is being shown to someone who has the phone that it works on. You start advertising, people download your app. You put advertising in there, start earning money from your app. Which means the more downloads you get, the more money you start earning. It’s win-win for developers.”

When it comes to predicting potential income, InMobi has an Economic Toolkit that helps developers calculate costs and income. Some countries, Terence told me, don’t always have the infrastructure to pay for apps - making advertising a more practical solution for generating money.

“What we always say is: go global. Make sure that your app is translated and then InMobi can serve adverts all around the world and start earning you money in places that you’ve never even heard of.”

Yes, definitely an evangelist. And a realistic one, too.

“I tell people to try us out, compare us with the competition and if we don’t meet up to expectations, call me or email me and tell us what your experiences are - because that’s how we find out how we can be better”.

You can listen to my full report from Droidcon UK on our website, via iTunes or by downloading the MP3 file. You’ll also hear from event organiser Thibaut Rouffineau, HTC’s Michael Ludden, Marcus Hansson from Sony Ericsson and Marcus O’Sullivan of Cisco.
Author: The Fonecast
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