IDG Ventures backed Mobile Advertising firm Vserv.mobi has launched AudiencePro, a mobile advertising solution which leverages telecom operator data to provide better targeting to advertisers. Its first telecom operator partner for AudiencePro: Bharti Airtel, India’s largest telecom operator, with 171.3 million active mobile connections in India.
AudiencePro is being provided as a value added solution for advertisers on Vserv’s mobile advertising platform: advertisers can choose to improve targeting by opting for AudiencePro, for which they will be charged a premium over Vserv’s standard CPC and CPM advertising rates. The AudiencePro solution allows advertising to be targeted, based on information such as demographics, spending power, network usage, location, content relevance and device specific data, on the basis of information received from the telecom operator. Previously, Vserv had circle level targeting.
This is a particularly significant development because, so far, telecom operators have allowed usage of their data or, as Vserv Co-founder Dippak Khurana told us, data ranges) for targeting on on-deck services, mostly Mobile Value Added services. This partnership allows advertisers to target their advertising off-deck using the same data, down to a particular city, ARPU range, data usage patterns (if she’s consuming less or more than 5 mb of data), content consumption preferences (cricket, music, football, language) based on the content consumed on the network. To our question on user data privacy, Khurana said that their servers are deployed with Airtel, and Vserv only gets broad data ranges, as opposed to pin-pointed data on each user. Vserv will also allow consumers the flexibility of opting out of AudiencePro, via their website.
Telecom operator partnerships are hard to ink (this one took Vserv six months, Khurana told us), and this appears to be a significant differentiator, because ad networks tend to operate independently, collecting their own data on usage patterns across websites and applications.
Vserv will look to extend this partnership globally, and says it expects to announce one more Indian and International partnership shortly. In July last year, Vserv had inked a deal with Vodafone to offer telecom operator based billing, adding a paywall feature to its AppWrapper platform.
We’ll have more in an interview with Khurana, up shortly.