Mobile ad server dishes up new business model

Kate Gerwig
03 Jul 2009
00:00

Increasing revenue by serving targeted mobile ads to wireless customers is one way mobile operators can increase revenue, and Alcatel-Lucent is hoping its new Advertising Selection Server will help create the next generation of mobile advertising and generate additional revenue in a wireless business model that goes beyond monthly subscriptions.

Telecom service providers of all types have been looking for a role in the growing digital media value chain -- in short, getting a cut of the content they transport. By concentrating on the assets that wireless operators have and other companies don't, Alcatel-Lucent's targeted advertising model is designed to capitalize on carriers' network expertise, customer information and operating and billing systems (OSS/BSS).

Alcatel-Lucent has also created a new revenue stream for itself by offering the Advertising Selection Server as a hosted cloud-based service, although operators can buy the servers and run their own ad-serving operation.

"With the hosted model, there's no capex investment on the part of service providers. In an economic downturn, this can improve their return on investment," said Rudi Broos, director of strategy and marketing for Alcatel-Lucent's digital media and advertising business. The hosted model also provides a faster go-to-market strategy.

Avoiding mobile silo solutions, Alcatel-Lucent's Advertising Selection Server can address a number of mobile services, including SMS, MMS, WAP browsers, even ring tones.

"Our solution can consolidate all the inventory you can imagine in push and pull modes," Broos said. Wireless carriers choose the advertising models they want to use.

Adding credibility to its offering, Alcatel-Lucent came out of the gate with German mobile operator E-Plus as its first hosted-service customer. E-Plus is part of the KPN group of companies and, as the third-largest German wireless carrier, has 15 million mobile customers, an estimated 25% of the German market.

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