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NBC Universal reveals its mobile strategy

NBC Universal plans to expand its mobile content offerings to increase its reach and mobile advertising revenue.

NBC Universal's mobile platform includes live and on-demand video, along with interactive content such as applications, games, the mobile Web and SMS, targeting consumers through a variety of distribution partners. NBCU has deals with all of the major wireless carriers in the U.S., plus partnerships with MobiTV and MediaFLlo's FloTV, and the companyh runs pre-roll ads before mobile video clips, as well as banner ads and text ads within SMS messages in conjunction with 4Info.

"NBCU is constantly working to provide more content that mobile consumers want, and to reach them where they are," said Salil Dalvi, senior vice president of mobile platform development for NBC Universal Digital Distribution, New York.

"Sometimes that means distribution through a cell phone operator and sometimes this means content that is optimized for a specific device," he said.

NBCU is a leading media and entertainment company specializing in the development, production and marketing of entertainment, news and information to a global audience. NBCU digital ad sales offers mobile as part of its product suite for advertisers.

The company is 80 percent owned by General Electric and 20 percent owned by Vivendi Universal Entertainment.

NBCU has a partnership and equity investment in 4Info for messaging ads, although NBCU's digital ad sales offers mobile as part of its product suite for advertisers.

NBCU is using mobile interactivity and advertising provider SinglePoint's SingleBrand Ad Marketplace to monetize their mobile messaging inventory (see story).

"SinglePoint is pleased to help NBC Universal monetize its SMS inventory" said Rich Begert, CEO of SinglePoint, Bellevue, WA, in a statement. "SinglePoint makes NBC Universal mobile messaging inventory available to 4Info and other ad networks through recently introduced SingleBrand Ad Marketplace -- the first Web-based mobile advertising marketplace for text messaging campaigns.

"Advertisers, brands and ad Networks can easily browse available inventory, buy ads, submit creative and monitor campaign results, all via the Web," he said. has launched the Rachel Maddow Show application for the iPhone and iPod touch, offering consumers a new way to get Ms. Maddow's look at politics, pop culture and current events (see story).

NBC has launched a Today show mobile application for iPhone and iPod touch users, marking one of the first times for a morning news program to engage with consumers in this manner (see story).

With the impending DTV transition, mobile video content providers are licking their chops waiting in the wings (see story).

NBCU believes the transition to digital TV and the spectrum it will open up will have a positive impact on the mobile industry.

"The DTV transition will help one of our distribution partners, Flo TV, expand its coverage, which is good for NBCU," Mr. Dalvi said.

"NBCU is an owner of TV stations, and we are constantly evaluating whether there are opportunities to use a portion of that spectrum for mobile," he said.