Third party advertising could backfire on operators


New YouGov poll shows operators reputation as a trusted advertising source could be at risk if third party SMS advertising increases

New YouGov research suggests operators have “significant” opportunities to boost revenues through the offering of SMS deals, but warns about the dangers of introducing third party advertising.

According to the report which was commissioned by mobile marketing solutions provider Upstream, the majority of people polled (52 per cent) said they saw operators as “highly trusted advertisers”.

Only eight per cent of pollees said they thought of third party advertisers as trusted and 72 per cent of people said they would leave an operator serving third party SMS adverts.

Upstream chief executive Alex Vratskides said the research showed the SMS advertising space was a clear way for operators to communicate effectively but warned of the dangers of going to far with third party advertise.

“As they are not promoting third parties, operators have de facto opt-in; they also have an enormous amount of customer data pre-gathered as well as an in-depth knowledge of their own products – all of these factors can allow them to be highly targeted in their promotions,” Vratskides said.

“Consumers will only tolerate a finite number of these extremely personal contacts via mobile and operators must be cautious not to abuse the clear trust that consumers have in them.

“Offers can clearly have great value when delivered via the mobile but this is not like the ‘daily deals’ phenomenon we see with brands like Groupon. As far as mobile marketing is concerned, less is almost always more when it comes to generating consumer response.”