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(Image courtesy of geeky-gadgets.com)
While iAd may have been launched on July 1st, apparently they're still having trouble getting out of the advertising gate. Apple had originally named seventeen launch partners for iAd, but only two had campaigns for most of July, according to The Wall Street Journal. The reason for the slow start is, apparently, ad agencies are taking longer than expected to learn the system and adjust to the tight reins that Apple has over the creative aspect, say ad execs.
Unilever PLC and Nissan Co. were the only ones with iAd campaigns during July. As far as the rest of the seventeen? Citigroup Inc., Walt Disney Co. and J.C. Penney Co.--which melded its campaign within the back-to-school time frame--have put forth iAd campaigns and other companies are still making plans as well.
Generally, marketers have free reign in the creative realm on their ads. But with Apple keeping a keen eye on things, ad execs are moving forward cautiously.
Because of this, the mobile ad process is taking about 8 to 10 weeks all told, which is a lot longer than usual for most mobile ads, say ad execs. The actual ad building, covered by Apple, takes two weeks longer than expected in some cases.
"It's a huge issue having Apple in the creative mix," notes Patrick Moorhead, director of mobile platforms at DraftFCB, an ad agency that is owned by Interpublick Group of Cos. Moorhead isn't working with any iAd projects.
The lengthy process has also apparently taken a toll on some companies. Chanel SA, a luxury marketer, and an original Apple iAd launch partner, has seemed to drop their efforts, saying that they don't have any campaigns currently planned.
As for Citigroup, they are "taking a phased approach and working closely with Apple to ensure everything is working properly," because of the technology and platform involved, noted a Citigroup spokeswoman.
"I think it's the best looking ad format and will perform long term, but the start has been disappointingly slow," notes Sam Altman, chief exec with the app Loopt Inc.
Adding to the difficulty is that Apple has yet to send out a "developer kit" to agencies so that they can actually understand how iAd works. To Apple's credit though, they do make it a part of dev software for iOS.
Just the same, Apple still doesn't let marketers know where their iAd will make its appearance, which can sometimes leave advertisers scrambling to look for their ads. But Apple does let marketers determine where they DON'T want their ads showing up.
Regardless, mobile advertising will still probably continue to pick up steam as time goes on. Have you noticed any iAds yet in your apps readers? Do they seem to work in terms of marketing? Not work? Feel free to leave comments below!
Follow this article's author, Matthew Tilmann on Twitter