Access the publisher's website Journal of Marketing Research 51, 3 (2014) 270-285
Mobile advertising is one of the fastest-growing advertising formats. In 2013, global spending on mobile advertising was approximately $16.7 billion and it is expected to exceed $62.8 billion by 2017. The most prevalent type of mobile advertising is mobile display advertising (MDA), which takes the form of banners on mobile webpages and in mobile applications. This paper examines which product characteristics are likely to be associated with MDA campaigns that are effective in increasing consumers’ favorable attitudes towards products and purchase intentions. Using data from a large-scale test-control field experiment covering 54 U.S. MDA campaigns run between 2007 and 2010 and involving 39,946 consumers, we find that MDA campaigns significantly increased consumers’ favorable attitudes and purchase intentions only when they advertised products that were higher (versus lower) involvement and utilitarian (versus hedonic). This finding is explained using established theories of information processing and persuasion, and suggests that when MDAs work they do so by triggering consumers to recall and process previously stored product information.