It might be an understatement to say that Apple’s iAd initiative has gotten off to staggered and arguably confusing start. Amid reports that advertisers are extremely pleased with the level of engagement and click through rates with iAds are an equal, if not greater, number of reports centering on how many companies are quickly growing frustrated with the unusually involved role Apple is taking in the creative process. As a result of Apple’s penchant for perfection, the release dates for certain ad campaigns are being pushed back while others can’t even seem to get off of the ground. Just 2 weeks ago, Adidas reportedly withdrew its entire iAd campaign after growing frustrated with Steve Jobs, who someone familiar with Adidas and Apple’s dealings labeled a “control freak.”
At the same time, recent data compiled by IDC indicates that Apple’s iAds are on track to capture 21% of the mobile ad market in 2011, and though some blue chip firms are understandably put off by Apple’s way of doing things, Apple’s in the ad business for the long haul. And while some companies may look for ads elsewhere, Apple is wasting no time in beefing up its advertising options for folks still on board.
A recent report from Gigaom explains that Apple has plans to seriously expandits advertising options over the next few months, with the biggest change being the addition of in-stream video ads served to the iPhone, the iPad, and perhaps even the Apple TV.
Many publishers have been slow to bring their videos to the iPhone and iPad, due in part to the lack of mature tools available for monetizing content on those devices. Because iOS devices don’t support Adobe Flash, publishers need to do additional work to make their current ad-serving systems work with the HTML5 video delivery required for the iPhone and iPad. That’s caused many publishers to think twice before delivering video to those devices.
With Apple working on an easier way to implement video ads that would work with both Quicktime and HTML 5 video, publishers would be able to tack on pre, mid, and post-roll video ads much in the same way users would experience them with Flash content.
Also of note is that Apple’s streaming video ads might potentially come with advertising goodies such as location data and anonymous user behavior data to better match up certain ads with types of users across varying locations.