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Target shores up mobile sales with product-packed ad campaign

Target is getting a head start on holiday spending with a new interactive mobile advertising campaign that bundles multiple products into one ad unit to drive online sales.

The big box retailer is using mobile advertising to promote free shipping on some of the season’s hottest toys, and the ads are running within the Pandora iPhone application. The campaign also supports the microsite that Target has set up for the holidays.

“Target wants to make it easy and convenient for moms to find the right gifts for their kids this holiday season,” said Eddie Baeb, spokesman for Target, Minneapolis.

“We’ve developed to be a go-to source for browsing and shopping for kids’ gifts,” he said.

Tis the season?
The copy for Target’s mobile ad reads, “Free shipping on top kids gifts. Yipeee.”

When consumers click on the ad, they are able to swipe through a gallery that features images of some of the most-popular toys.

Being able to pull in multiple pieces of content into one ad unit points to the growing sophistication with mobile advertising in the past year.

The images of the toys can then be clicked on, which pulls up the toy’s product page within Target’s mobile site.

From there, consumers can read reviews and view pictures of the toys. Consumers can then checkout instantly via the landing page.

Once consumers close the ad, they can continue to swipe through the gallery to check out the rest of the featured toys.

Target’s mobile site

The Target campaign is the newest example of marketers leveraging deep linking to tie together different mediums and drive quick sales on specific promotions.

In fact, Target also recently updated its Cartwheel deal app with a deep-linking feature to improve the navigation between the app and external apps, sites and emails.

With consumers increasingly cross-platform shopping, deep linking will likely let mobile shine this holiday season when consumers want to take an instant action between an email with a richer app experience.

Mobile holiday
The mobile ad builds on Target’s recent announcement that this holiday season will be the retailer’s biggest holiday campaign to date (see story).

Additionally, the retailer has been making a big focus on improving the in-store experience with its mobile app.

Target also updated its mobile app with more store-specific specials and offers, showing the critical role that mobile plays in the in-store experience plays for many big box retailers in August (see story).

Advancements in retargeting with better location data and geo-conquesting has also grown significantly this year, meaning that retailers need to create better in-store experiences to lure in foot traffic.

“I think consumers are accustomed to swiping through ads because of social media,” said Shannyn De Arman, advertising sales executive of mobile apps at Fiksu, Boston.

Ms. De Arman is not affiliated with Target. She spoke based on her expertise on the subject.

“These ads will be great to rack in more content, and they’re customizable for the user,” she said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York