Yieldmo has its eye on your thumb

For the last five years, the mobile ad startup has been working on a platform that collects and analyses mobile ad engagement data to gather insights and create segments of the people most likely to convert. On Monday, the platform and a small group of select partners finally entered a closed beta period that will last two to four months.

Consumers spend hours each day swiping, hovering, tapping, tilting and scrolling on their phones, yet the gestural data generated by all those micro-actions is a blind spot for marketers, according to Yieldmo.

Certain gestures can be strong indicators that someone is likely to take an action, such as the speed at which people scroll past an ad, how long they dwell and whether they scroll back for a second look. When users are intrigued by an ad, for example, they often tilt the phone, which Yieldmo registers as a subtle change in the accelerometer reading.

PHD US has tested the platform and saw intriguing results for an automotive client. The auto brand ditched the usual KPI measures, such as clicks and CPM, and instead optimised toward time spent and other engagement metrics.

In the experiment, the target audience was twice as likely to take the desired action, said Craig Atkinson, CIO at PHD US.

Although people rarely click on ads, especially on their phones, clicks are still the default KPI for most marketers.

“I’ll hear people say things like, ‘We chose this media placement or this piece of creative because the CTR was .025 versus something else that was .018, so it’s obviously better,’” Atkinson said. “Anyone else in any other business in the world would look at these two numbers and think, ‘The CTR was zero.’”

Roughly half of all impressions delivered by Yieldmo generate some form of engagement. If a marketer serves 1 million ads to 1 million people, that results in engagement-related events for around 500,000 people. If the average CTR on a campaign is 0.5%, which is generous, the marketer only gets click data on about 5,000 people.

That is not to say that metrics like viewability aren’t valuable; marketers just need a more nuanced way to think about them.

The article is authored by Allison Schiff and published on AdExchanger.com