BARCELONA, Spain—A number of location-based ad-tech players are at Mobile World Congress this week to talk about the shift from online to real-world advertising, and xAd’s pitch to global marketers is particularly interesting. Buying location-based mobile ads, it says, is as easy as purchasing a search campaign.
Today, xAd is unveiling a new ad-buying tool called MarketPlace that’s built off data from 100 million locations the company has collected through its Blueprints and Footprints products in recent years. Similar to a website, each location is tagged with keywords—“fast food lovers,“ „car dealerships,“ or, more precisely, „KFC stores“ and „BMW lots“—that marketers buy to target specific groups of consumers with mobile ads. KFC, OMD and iHeartMedia are among a handful of advertisers that have tested the searchlike buying method, which powers ads in 70,000 apps reaching 300 million global users.