Orb gets sky high clicks with AdMob

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Since launching its mobile ad network nine months ago, AdMob Inc. has grown to 250 million WAP page views monthly with average click-through rates of 3 percent to 4 percent.

Though any advertiser can buy space from the cross-carrier international network, mobile software company Orb Networks Inc. has seen particularly strong results due to AdMob's unique targeting opportunities.

"Reaching mobile users with specific capabilities on their handset had been really difficult before AdMob," said Ian McCarthy, vice president of product marketing at Orb, Emeryville, CA. "Far more than on the PC, the specific capabilities of the [mobile] device on which you're encountering the ad are of huge importance to the effectiveness of the ad itself."

Orb software lets users stream live and stored television, photos, music and videos to any Web-enabled device, including WAP sites on a consumer's cell phone. With AdMob, the company typically runs a WAP ad saying, "Just as easy as it is to click this ad, you could be clicking to hear your own home music, listen to your Skype voicemails or watch live or recorded TV from home."

"During the first couple days of one campaign, we were getting click throughs at an insanely high level, north of 60 percent, and the conversions were three times above what I expected," Mr. McCarthy said.

He also said that during Orb's first campaign with AdMob in December the ad buy on the mobile network outperformed Google AdSense by 4 to 1. This result does not take into account the lower ad price of AdMob placement versus Google.

Other AdMob advertisers include Adidas, Nokia and MTV. The network serves ads in 156 countries, with a majority of its traffic in the United States, Europe and Asia. Ads placed through AdMob, Menlo Park, CA, can be targeted by type of platform, capabilities of handset, geography and by carrier.

"For too long, mobile meant carriers only," Mr. McCarthy said. "As we're seeing, the walls of the walled-garden approach are crumbling everywhere, to the benefit of everyone in the ecosystem."

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