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Apr 3, 2014

Retina Display Ads: Epic Smartphone Targeting Techniques The Industry Experts Didn't Want You To See

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Retina Display Ads: Epic Smartphone Targeting Techniques The Industry Experts Didn't Want You To See
Adobe surveys show 71 percent of people access social networks via mobile devices - 189 million of Facebook's users are mobile only and account for 30%+ of Facebooks Ad Revenue (a 7% increase from 2012).  Forbes predict smartphones will account for up to 50% of all online video consumption by 2016 and other research shows 25% of 18-44 year olds can not remember the last time they did not have their mobile with them. We can all agree smartphones have 'taken over' and according to Nielson, Android and Apple dominate some countries with a 93% collective market share.

Google smartphone targeting unlocks potential for social advertisers to reach that key audience (especially if you are using your Google+ personal/business page in your ads).

Some weeks ago I demonstrated how to boost high quality traffic to your social pages using Google Search Network ('Increase Google+ Audiences With AdWords'). Let's now look at cherry picking and pointing your social ads at the best apps you can find from a choice of over 1 million, placing  yourself in and around the most relevant content within apps and letting Google transforming your standard banner ads into automatically adjusted retina image ads for retina displays.

top us smartphone operating systems by market share

But First: Interstitial, Banner or Both?


AdWords allows you to display ads on apps opted into Google's AdMob/AdSense networks in many ways. Options include manual placement (i.e. adsenseformobileapps.com), in-app advertising and YouTube (but I will leave YT for another article) . The major difference in-app only and open display is the use of interstitial ad formats (appear independently as a pop up and not just in and around content).

Interactive Interstitial Ads
Interactive Interstitial Ads

Francis Bea talks of 58% of their publishers have integrated the interstitial format (the second most popular after this was 22%) which means a large number of apps will show this type of ad and AppFlood love them - they say this format out performs any other  which leads us to believe the in-app option is probably going to attract traffic quicker then standard banner/panel ads.

Some rich media interstitial versions seem to be quite exclusive and you would need to contact a Google Sales Rep to use them. I guess if you had a few thousand followers, a G+ business page (or any business URL) and good investment  - you could try get access or use the 3 sizes below.  

Google Display (In-App Only) - Interstitial Ads
  • Inline Rectangle 300 x 250 (this converts)
  • Mobile Interstitial 320 x 480 (portrait or landscape)
  • Tablet Interstitial - 1024 x 768 (portrait or landscape)

Google Display (HD Compatible) - Banner Ads
  • Inline Rectangle - 300 x 250 
  • Mobile Banner - 320 x 50
  • Banner - 468 x 60
  • Leaderboard - 728 x 90 
 
Site Category Exclusions
Site Category Exclusions
  
We will upgrade the above banners to HD versions later but for now - keep a note of 300 x 250 being the 'special' banner ad as it can be converted into both HD and a interstitial format. It is also important that you use site category exclusions (above) if you decide to go for the interstitial formats alone and exlude 'non-interstitial'. So you know,  ad location 'below the fold' can be set to 'exclude' if you want your ad to appear  on the first page that loads on mobile devices (user can see ad without scrolling).

How To Find And Target The Best, Newest and Trending Apps

Example Found In Android App Store
Example Found In Android App Store
The smartest thing to do when finding the best apps to target is maybe not to use Google Display Planner Tool on it's own (a very effective gadget that helps you compete with other tool users) - search the most popular apps manually via Android and Apple online stores  instead. Apple force everyone to use the store via iTunes which offers better search parameters (i.e. top free, new, trending). Picking new and noteworth apps within categories could help you find very low cost clicks early (i.e. low numbers of direct competition for same spot). You could simply advertise on the apps you use (if opted into Google).

I will manually target Google Search app for example purposes only. Trying to get on the first page of the app instead of the site (for lower cost clicks) sounds like fun but I don't really know where the ads appear on this app.

Finding and Adding App ID's: Using the AdWords interface, go to 'Ad Extensions' tab and find 'app extension' (an option usually used to link your own mobile app). Search the app in 'Package Name' field and this is where you will find the 'App ID' for the apps for both Android and Apple (without having to wait for placement reports).

Android ID
Android ID
Apple ID
Apple ID
    
Add the app you want to manually place your ads on (make sure it is the correct one and you don't click save) and copy the targeted URL. For this example it was:

Add these App ID's as manual placements in the following format:
  • Android: mobileapp::2-com.google.android.googlequicksearchbox 
  • Apple: mobileapp::1-284815942

Example App ID Placement With Keyword
Example App ID Placement With Keyword
 
Targting Controls: To advertise to the most relevant users of an an app you can add layers of interests or remarketing lists. Layering will improve results but I would generally target the app alone to check costs/impressions between operating software first. You might even decide to use additional display settings to refine your targeted audience by operator, device or wi-fi, loads of options.


How To Upgrade Standard Banners To High-Definition/ Retina Smartphone Ads 


Now for the best tip of them all - getting the highest quality banners on any smartphone device.

Standard vs. HD Smartphone Banner Ads
Standard vs. HD Smartphone Banner Ads

Can you see the small HD badge above, under the second 300 x 250 inline rectangle?

Not many people know you can upload a banner ad in double the size and allow Google to automatically adjust the image according to a smartphones pixel density. Retina ads on retina displays.

Inline Rectangle 300 x 250
Inline Rectangle 300 x 250
HD Inline Rectangle 600 x 500
HD Inline Rectangle 600 x 500

List Of Retina Sizes:
  • Banner - 936 x 120 
  • Inline Rectangle - 600 x 500
  • Leaderboard - 1456 x 180
  • Mobile Banner - 640 x 100  

End Notes:  Display Ads built in the AdWords Ad Gallery (which are not HD) do offer benefits like 'mouse over rate' success metrics (users who hovered over an ad for more then one second) and the image ads in this article are different. Created externally; images need to be 150kb (or under) in size and in GIF, .JPG, .JPEG, or .PNG format. Don't give anyone an epileptic fit with strobe type flash and the increased HD/Retina sizes can not be uploaded via AdWords editor.

If you decide to use a standard URL (instead of G+ page) and have conversion tracking installed (automatic on android digital ads) you can use this data in conjunction with Display Optimizer to let Google find reasonable apps and bid on them for you. Remember to verify your site and add your call extensions to give your new found social audiences/customers click-to-call ability .


Got a QR Scanner? Follow Imran Sq
Got a QR Scanner? Follow Imran Sq

Top image: dailybillboardblog.com

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