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Verve Mobile this week released its second “State of the Market” report containing the activity seen on its ad network. In this case it focused on the Quick Serve Restaurant (QSR) category — a leading area of search and user activity in mobile.

Similar in some ways to xAd’s latest report, Verve showed that advertisers are coming around to location targeting in mobile campaigns. Not only are they geo-targeting more, but they’re doing so at more granular levels.

This plays out in Verve’s data through three different tiers of location targeting:

Geo-aware: Traditional geo-targeting such as DMA-level

Geo-fence: More refined radius around a location

Audience: Targeting locations based on demographics known to be there

Geo-fencing continues to evolve throughout the industry with conditional factors (weather, time of day, product category, etc.) that can refine a target radius. Targeting around competitors’ locations (conquesting) is also an area of development.

Audience targeting is likewise heating up. As we’ve covered, big data is enabling lots of location data that can better define audience. That frames the discussion around audiences, which gets the attention (and comfort levels) of brand advertisers.

There are a handful of players pioneering this space, and it’s one of the more interesting areas in the mobile sphere. Verve’s Place Insights is notable and some of its “design principles” can be seen in CEO Tom MacIsaac’s thoughts we covered here.

All of this meanwhile finds proof points in the data. 70 percent of QSR campaigns on Verve’s network apply location targeting. That’s split up by 55% for GeoAware; 28% for Geo-Fence; and 17% for audience targeting.

More important are the results: QSR campaigns that applied some form of location targeting saw 2x higher click through rates than those that didn’t.  There was also a 3x lift in foot traffic seen with one major chain left unnamed.

This makes sense for QSRs where there’s high degree of variability to location. It’s also a category where low consideration items causes speed and convenience (read: location) to sometimes trump brand affinity in influencing purchase decisions.

Across categories, we expect to see continued growth in not only mobile location targeting but its levels of granularity and strategy. Again, it’s one of the most exciting areas of mobile right now — at least in terms of innovation and revenue growth.

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