$50 Billion Available to Mobile Innovators (iPhone Bailout Plan?)

At our tech accelerator Gangplank we get pitched an idea at least once a week that attempts to solve one of two problems.

  1. Local businesses have few effective options to advertise because direct mail, radio and newspapers are losing traction.
  2. Existing marketers/advertisers are running out of viable mediums to use for their customers.

We have been tracking the space for the last 12 months with lots of interest, but have long struggled with what is the right strategy to “track” effectiveness. While newspapers, magazines and radio have no real way to track effectiveness, they tend to get away with it because they were “grand fathered” in as already being accepted. Counting the number of “eye balls” is sufficient for them to base pricing on.

Click-thru web advertising has ushered in a the age of “prove it” before I will pay you. Something similar needs to happen on the non “internet” side of things. A “brick-thru” so to speak. A way to track conversions and pay on a sliding scale.

The mobile company I’m involved with Held, LLC has put together a platform to address some of these concepts. We have working pilots and companies actively testing the platform. Initially we started the platform as a research project to test all functionality of the iPhone including geo spatial awareness and connecting back to the cloud. It wasn’t until we started sharing our research findings that we realized the true potential.

I opened the Wall Street Journal the other day and saw the following graph:


These numbers are in BILLIONS!!! Everyone seems to indicate newspapers are failing. Radio and magazine’s are not growing. Think about that for a minute. That is $50 billion in advertising looking for a home. As you can see by LOCAL TV @ $28.8 billion that local is important. I think that mobile which is not on the chart is going to be competing for those dollars. Mobifestival this weekend will hopefully explore these opportunities more. If you are interested in this space or technology drop me a line. I’d love to meet and discuss.

One Comment

  1. The beauty of local advertising, as opposed to its more national or international brethren, is that it’s actually advertising *that people want*. Personally I’m nervous about downloading free apps – even useful ones – that are supported by advertising, as I have a low tolerance for intrusive ads. But a good iPhone app that aggregated local classified advertising (yard sale notices, realtor listings, local social events, plus the inevitable births, marriages and deaths) would be a completely different proposition.

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