Opera Mediaworks launches native ad exchange for mobile

Assortment of premium mobile publishers participating, including ZeptoLab

To meet the growing demand for premium native advertising opportunities in mobile, Opera Mediaworks today introduced a global, native ad exchange for the buying and selling of seamless, integrated advertising experiences on mobile devices — all within an exclusive, private environment. The exchange is a marketplace extension of its programmatic display and video offering, the Opera Mediaworks Ad Exchange (OMAX), which it launched in 2013.

Opera Mediaworks launches native ad exchange for mobile

The new native exchange will connect mobile publishers’ premium inventory, which is largely in-app, to more than a dozen different native demand sources. Both premium brands and direct response advertisers can now bid on native, in-stream ad units, with all of the benefits – chiefly, scale and efficiency – of programmatic buying.

“Programmatic buying has become top of mind for both publishers and advertisers for very good reason,” says Mark Fruehan, President of Publisher Services, Global Supply, at Opera Mediaworks. “It’s a more workflow efficient environment that automates the often lengthy insertion order process and brings greater audience insight to premium ad buys. Combining that efficiency with the proven impact of native ad units is extremely exciting.”

Participating companies

Both brand and direct-response advertisers are tapping into the premium advertising opportunities the exchange offers, which in many cases is high-quality, in-app inventory that was not previously available programmatically or on mobile.

More than a dozen native demand sources are connected to the exchange to buy these relevant and high-performing ad units programmatically, including Appsfire, AppList, adMarketplace, Bidtellect, Facebook, HeyZap,TapSense, NativeAd.com and Opera Response.

On the publisher side, launch partners for the new exchange include Demand Media, WildTangent, Gogii Games and Pinsight Media.

ZeptoLab, the entertainment and gaming company best known for developing the game Cut the Rope, was one of the earliest adopters and has already seen significant incremental revenue, as the company was able to scale its sponsored native content offering.

“Native ads have been a core part of our sales and inventory monetization strategy, but we were struggling with how to truly capitalize on this immense opportunity,” explains Elena Solovyeva, Director of Digital at ZeptoLab. “What Opera Mediaworks did for us was provide a 1-2-punch solution to this problem. We were able to drastically increase our revenue by plugging into its native ad exchange and gaining access to pre-screened buyers, with utmost levels of control over demand sources and creative filters,” adds Solovyeva.

DIY native advertising for publishers

“The second part of the solution was what drove home the value for us,” continues Solovyeva. “We were able to use Opera Mediaworks Studio, a rich media creative ad builder, to create custom native experiences that our sales team could go out and offer to our agency and brand-direct clients.”

ZeptoLab is just one of the companies using the key additional component of the native ad exchange: the ad creative platform, Opera Mediaworks Studio. With this platform, a mobile publisher like ZeptoLab can identify native advertising opportunities within its inventory and empower its sales team to take those directly to buyers through the creation of a native ad template. In this way, publishers can design and deliver their own custom native ad experiences — which is something they could do on desktop platforms through traditional content sponsorships, but did not easily translate over to mobile.

The DIY native advertising offering allows for deeper, integrated brand placements that stand out from the highly commoditized mobile banner, and in most cases results in an uplift in CPM, or cost per thousand impressions.

Programmatic + native

“There’s no doubt that programmatic will drive the future of mobile advertising because of the scale and efficiency it delivers, but there are concerns over quality,” says Mahi de Silva, CEO, Opera Mediaworks. “Native ads are high quality by their very nature: highly customizable with high-yield, delivering a great consumer experience. Our new native ad exchange is the best way to take these high-impact units and distribute them across the mobile landscape.”

Opera Mediaworks’ native ad exchange is now available to all qualified buyers and sellers.

About Opera Mediaworks

Opera Mediaworks is the first mobile ad platform built for brands, delivering breakthrough marketing at scale. Our technology powers the biggest publishers in the world, enabling marketers to convey the highest quality ad experiences to more people in more places when it matters most. Our exclusive Instant-PlayTM HD video technology and award-winning rich media touches, engages and creates deep interaction with consumers in the most popular mobile apps and sites around the globe. We work with over 90% of the AdAge Top 100 advertisers and 18 of the top 25 global publishers. A fully-owned subsidiary of Opera Software, Opera Mediaworks is headquartered in San Mateo, California, with offices worldwide. To learn more, visit www.operamediaworks.com.