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Has the time finally come for the medium of the future?


Journal of Advertising Research



Publishing details

Journal of Advertising Research 2011 Vol 51:1 p 59-71 50th anniversary supplement

Authors / Editors

Barwise P;Meehan S


Publication Year



Mobile advertising is a young, fast-growing part of marketing communications. Initially over-hyped, it is now starting to take off for real. What can we learn about it from the early academic research? Initial studies on the medium focused on “push” advertising using SMS—an issue complicated by issues of the constraints of consumer permission, acceptance and trust. Results have been mixed but suggest acceptance, especially by younger consumers, of well-executed SMS-based push advertising if the source is trusted, permission has been given, and the messages are relevant and/or entertaining. Researchers have started to broaden the agenda to cover push mobile advertising beyond SMS (e.g., using still or moving pictures and sound) and mobile as a “pull” or response medium (e.g., in combination with traditional media and promotions). For future research, emerging topics include device-readable printed codes in print ads and packaging; mobile search; location-based mobile communications and promotions; branded mobile entertainment, especially games; and user-generated mobile content and social networking. Many of these reflect the growth of the mobile Internet since the 2007 launch of Apple's iPhone. Finally—perhaps uniquely within academic research in marketing—most mobile advertising research has been conducted in Asia and Europe, not the United States. The rapid growth of the mobile Internet will, the authors hope, lead to more U.S. research in this increasingly important area.

Available on ECCH


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