Apple is analyzing the purchasing habits of its 150 million iTunes users in order to help serve up targeted adverts through its iAd platform, according to “those with a knowledge of the new mobile advertising scheme.”
“Apple knows what you’ve downloaded, and how much time you spend interacting with applications,” Rachel Pasqua, director of mobile at iCrossing, a marketing company told the “Telegraph” (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/apple/7876822/Apple-iAd-secrets-revealed.html). “It even knows what you’ve downloaded, don’t like and deleted.”
She says that Information about shopping habits is never passed directly to advertisers, but being able to paint an overall picture of people’s online behavior, likes and preferences could enable advertisers to target possible consumers more effectively. Advertisers can use these generalized “portraits” of users to decide which apps to serve their ads in.
Rob Candelino, marketing director at Unilever, told “Telegraph” that it was using iAd to target married men who are in their late 30s and have children, with adverts for its Dove Men+Care range. Apple then overlays that with the iTunes information and targets quite well and quite surgically, he said.
iAds combine the emotion of TV advertising with the interactivity of Internet advertising, according to Apple CEO Steve Jobs. iAds will kick off with mobile ad campaigns from leading global brands including AT&T, Best Buy, Campbell Soup Company, Chanel, Citi, DirecTV, GEICO, GE, JCPenney, Liberty Mutual Group, Nissan, Sears, State Farm, Target, Turner Broadcasting System, Unilever and The Walt Disney Studios.
Apple has iAd commitments for 2010 totaling over US$60 million, which represents almost 50 %of the total forecasted US mobile ad spending for the second half of 2010, says Jobs. He adds that iAd, which is built into iOS 4, allows users to stay within their app while engaging with the ad, even while watching a video, playing a game or using in-ad purchase to download an app or buy iTunes content.
Developers who join the iAd Network can incorporate a variety of advertising formats into their apps. Apple will sell and serve the ads, and developers will receive 60% of the iAd Network revenue, which is paid via iTunes Connect.