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3 things you might not know about full-screen mobile advertising

By Kurt Hawks

Full-screen ads have been with us for a while, yet some marketers are scratching their heads and wondering if full-screen ads should be a part of their mobile advertising mix.

The answer: yes, absolutely.

But let us take a look at three important facts about full-screen ads that you may not already know:

#1: Full-screen ads outperform small banner ads
We recently completed an internal study comparing small banner and full-screen ad campaigns running over the past six months. We found that full-screen ads generated a conversion rate five times higher than small banner ads. 

Additionally, full-screen ads do not generate unintended clicks.

Harris Interactive estimates 47 percent of small banner clicks are accidental, diminishing the effectiveness of the ad. Full-screen ads eliminate the ?fat finger? issue and ensure all clicks are genuine through 100 percent on-screen share of voice.

#2: Full-screen ads generate higher engagement rates 
Data from comScore found that 91 percent of users enjoy interacting with rich media ads, and our campaign results further bear this out.

For example, Buick LaCrosse launched a full-screen immersion ad campaign featuring a ?Simon Says? game concept.

The game illuminated the Buick LaCrosse tires in a specific pattern, and the user was tasked with successfully mimicking that pattern.

By incorporating functionality unique to mobile, Buick facilitated a seamless and interactive in-application experience that generated a 3.9 percent click-through rate, a 33 percent lift in purchase intent, and an average interaction time of two minutes and 42 seconds ? far beyond normal interaction times.

#3: Full-screen ads deliver a better experience for mobile users  
Full-screen ads, when deployed strategically, are less intrusive than banner ads. 

The small banner format limits available screen space and leaves little room for an application?s functionality.

Conversely, full-screen ads can be incorporated at logical and naturally occurring breaks in an application, preserving valuable screen space. For instance, in the gaming environment, full-screen interstitial ads may appear between levels. 

When it comes to user experience, it is also important to note that not all full-screen ads are created equal. 

Ads that feature a click protection menu protect the application experience by first asking if users would like to engage with the ad, virtually eliminating inadvertent clicks that take users out of the application. 

Video ads are also an example. 

Rather than disrupting a user?s experience with noisy audio, videos can be designed to auto-play start on mute with the option to activate sound. 

So, now that we have covered the facts, what is a marketer to do when figuring out where full-screen fits into their overall ad mix?

Future is now
The new iPhone 5 boasts a screen that is 25 percent larger than previous models. Smartphones such as the Android models have already adapted this larger screen size and with Apple introducing the 4-inch screen, a new industry standard has officially been established. Bigger is better in the mobile world.

Full-screen ads will increase in relevance as an additional 50 million iPhones are purchased between now and the end of 2012, according to Strategy Analytics.

Not only are Apple diehards flocking to buy them, but the reduced price points for the iPhone 4 and 4s will drive iPhone adoption even higher.

Full-screen ads are poised to not only reach their widest possible audience to-date, but also to create a boom in ad engagement, campaign performance and positive user experience.

Statistics and case studies have proven that full-screen ads deliver better results than any other type of mobile ads, and they will continue to exceed expectations as smartphones adapt larger screens as the new standard. 

Now is the time for marketers to examine their mobile strategies and ensure that full-screen advertising is front and center this quarter and into 2013.

Kurt Hawks is general manager at ValueClick's Greystripe, San Francisco. Reach him at .