New Guidelines Offer Clarity for Location Based Advertising

location based advertising

It’s no secret that location based advertising presents a significant and growing opportunity for app publishers. Equally, it’s no secret that practice raises questions around how and when it should be used – and how to balance privacy concerns with revenue-creation opportunities.

It was just one year ago that Jack Simpson of Econsultancy wrote that “66% of marketers believe location based advertising is the ‘most exciting’ mobile opportunity for 2016, according to a recent IAB UK study.”

Simpson explained that “Location based advertising hinges around the fact that wherever we go these days we always carry a mobile with us. And most of us quite happily share our location data with the various apps we use.

“This presents an opportunity for advertisers to personalise their messages to people based on their current location. In real time. Using a person’s location data, gleaned from their mobile device, advertisers can send different messages to people depending on where they are.”

But now, as privacy concerns – as well as questions around ad measurement and placement – continue, new Location-Based Advertising Measurement Guidelines were recently released by the Media Rating Council.

The report states: “The document was prepared for the use and benefit of the media Industry, especially those constituents that analyze audience volumes based on location attributes or those entities that seek to analyze physical visitation or foot traffic.”

It continues: “It should be noted that the “best” methods and approaches to measure the audience of any media are driven by the nature of the medium, its environment, its mode(s) of delivery and how its audience consumes and interacts with the medium. This is especially true of Location- Based media due to the diverse nature of the locations, environmental factors for each location and the available measurement techniques for these unique environments.”

Among the goals for the document:

  • Provide for a consistent set of definitions for key elements of location-based measurement
  • Recommend minimum disclosures which should be provided to measurement data users
  • Provide a clear statement of recommended research operating practices and quality and describe minimum requirements as well as best practices
  • Encourage experimentation and advances to improve audience research quality

Many marketers feel the guidelines couldn’t come soon enough.

Said Anna Bager, senior vice president and general manager, mobile and video, IAB, in MediaPost: “We are quickly moving from a mobile-first world to one that is mobile-only, and the industry needs measurement guidelines that address this shift.”

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