January 21, 2010, 12:00 AM

Brands are beginning to test targeted mobile ads

Universal Studios Home Entertainment is the first to try a new type of mobile ad that enables consumers to purchase the advertised product within the ad.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment is the first to try a new type of mobile ad from ad technology vendor Adgregate Markets. The mobile ads, dubbed ShopAds, enable consumers to purchase the advertised product right then and there, within the ad.

In December, Universal was promoting the DVD release of the Quentin Tarantino film Inglourious Basterds. As part of its marketing efforts, it ran an ad campaign targeting 18- to 24-year-olds using mobile apps that are part of the Greystripe Inc. mobile ad network, which compiles the demographic data.

At certain points within numerous apps, the ad popped up as an overlay on the screen with an image and text promoting the film, and a buy button. Clicking on the buy button began a checkout process that stayed in the overlay until the order was complete.

“The time has come to merge the technologies that will optimize the mobile advertising experience for consumers, site publishers and advertisers alike. M-commerce advertising is all about combining impulse, speed and convenience,” says Henry Wong, CEO of Adgregate Markets. “The fewer steps it takes for consumers to shop, the more effective campaigns will be.”

This is the first ad of its kind for all parties involved, and they decline to reveal financial results. However, a spokesman for Adgregate says “the program surpassed expectations.”

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