Interview with Airpush – the Future of Mobile Advertising?

April 21, 2011

Most recently, we had the chance to chat with the founder and CEO of Airpush, Asher Delug. Airpush is an exciting new entrant to the mobile ad space. Find out more below.


What does Airpush offer that other Ad Networks might not?

Airpush is the first and only mobile ad network based on push notifications. Rather than displaying ads inside an app as other ad networks do, our ads display in the notification tray of Android devices. This generates dramatically higher engagement, and thus higher developer CPM’s, since the ads can be clicked at a user’s convenience rather than during an app session.

How do you define “quality” when selecting publishers for the Airpush network?

Anyone with an app listed in the Android Market can become an Airpush publisher. Whether your app has 100 installs or 10 million installs, Airpush will provide a massive earnings boost.

Android 2.2 / Android 2.3 notifications vs. Android 3.0 notifications – what are your thoughts on the differences?

Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) provides for much richer notifications than in previous Android OS versions. For example you can include video with a playback control directly in the notification, and you can use UI Widgets to build mini user interfaces which are self-contained within the notification. Currently Airpush is for phones only and doesn’t support the tablet-only Honeycomb build, however we are working on expanding our SDK to include tablet support.

What payment model(s) (CPM, CPC, CPA) does Airpush utilize?

Developers are paid on a CPM basis, and advertisers pay on a CPC basis. We post near real-time developer CPM’s and Fill Rates on our public website, and as of the time of this writing today’s CPM’s are $3.94 with a Fill Rate of 89%.

How has the reception been among advertisers to the concept?

Advertisers are ecstatic about having an alternative to in-app ads for two major reasons.

Firstly, in-app ads are plagued by a high percentage of accidental clicks, whereas notification ads don’t have this issue. A recent Harris Interactive study showed that around 50% of in-app ad clicks are accidental — a shockingly huge number. If you’ve ever used a mobile app, it’s easy to see why so many accidental clicks can be generated from in-app ads since they take up a significant chunk of the usable screen area.

The other reason advertisers love notification ads is that they generate much higher post-click engagement. When a user clicks an in-app ad, he’s already busy using an app and thus his attention span for the advertiser’s landing page is very short. With our ads, however, users view the ads when it’s truly convenient for them which results in higher post-click engagement.

How long has Airpush been serving Advertisers and Publishers?

We’re a very young ad network, having launched in January 2011.

Thoughts on the future of mobile? Do you have any thoughts on Honeycomb? Games vs Apps?

My thoughts are GO ANDROID! :)
I’m a fanatical Android lover, and I’m looking forward to watching the platform completely dominate iOS and other contenders.

As for Honeycomb, despite the weak start I’m extremely bullish on Honeycomb’s prospects. Once the kinks are worked out and the hardware vendors step up, it will prove to be a far superior tablet OS than anything else on the market.

Do you have any early results that you’re able to discuss?

Sure, here are a few data points since our launch in January:

– Over 3,000 Android registered developers.
– Over 100,000 new devices/day being enabled for Airpush ads.
– Traffic is doubling every week.
– Developer CPM’s have averaged $3.54 with 87% fill rates.
– Our staff has grown from 5 to 30+ in just a few months.
Where do you see the ad network community heading over the next year and what role do you hope for Airpush to play?

It’s clear that traditional in-app ads aren’t working well for Android developers, or any mobile developers for that matter. Sub $1 CPM’s are impossibly hard to make money from, which limits the creation of high quality free content. As a result, we will continue to see innovative mobile ad units and monetization methods such as Airpush. Some areas to watch include rich media ads, full-page interstitials, co-registration funnels, and more mobile CPA networks. All of these things are very mature on the web and in their infancy on mobile.

We think that Airpush is offering an innovative solution to mobile advertising, and will draw even higher quality talent and focus to the development of great apps for Android, which will ultimately benefit us all.

Thanks very much Airpush!

Check them out at Airpush.com

Comments

  • Matt

    I was considering switching to an Android phone this summer. After reading about the likelihood of having ads pushed directly to my notification bar, I absolutely will not do so.

    • Charles

      You do realize, of course, that it’s entirely dependent on a third-party app using this advertising method and not something inherent to Android itself, right? If you don’t want to get these, just avoid the 0.01% of apps that use it and you’ll be fine.

      • AM

        You have to understand that developers too need to earn a living – I have very very popular apps, and barely make any money out of them. And since the Android user-space is filled with misers, the developer can forget earning form paid apps.

        Like johann above I too get CPMs of $0.05-$0.09. If Airpush can give me CPMs that are 50 to 100 times more, I’m fine – I don’t care if my app gets taken down in 15 days – by then I would’ve made the kind of money I would have in 2 years. Seriously considering a switch to Airpush after reading this

        • http://www.maxikeys.com Hardy

          Just read about airpush today, and then googled for users opinion on the concept, and found some here. My first thought as an Android user was that this concept was a terrible idea.

          But as a developer, I have to agree with you. I hope many developers will use it – mostly because I hope, it will make customers behave in a more grown-up way – paying for what they get.

          I’m new in the Android world – haven’t released my first app yet. The problems making money from developing apps worries me – is it :
          – because Android users are like small spoiled children, wanting to have everything for free.
          – because of the more inconvenient installation process of a payed app.
          – because of the competition. Why pay for an app, when you can get another one for free.

          I think, it is a combination, and the competition spoils the users, so they get used to having everything for free. As developers the app world is a fun place, because it is new, you can make a product all alone and distribute it quite easy, and you can hope to make a fortune. This will not continue being that funny, and many developers will leave the place, and customers will maybe get used to pay for their goods. If airpush can accelerate that process, I welcome it warmly.

          • nachhh

            I agree with this. I really don’t know how the developer’s community have come to this point of get-for-free-stupidity. This is a idealist idea, and a big one. This is a market and nothing is for free. For some freedom, better go to the woods, write something genuine, dance or do whatever makes you feel good. Freedom is NOT here so you should pay for what you use or not use it at all. If you have the skills, you may hack it, I’m okay with that. But it seems that a lot of users think that the Android market is a mystic magic place where the artists live of the pleasure of working hard for months. If those users would pay for their times spent playing or doing whatever they do with the gadgets, they would notice no ad, that’s for sure.
            Where do they think their gadgets-fun gets paid from? Yeah, from ads. Smart people use this childish situation to get more revenue. And more and more ads coming soon.
            “If you use air-push I won’t use your app, and I will do that or that” is not actually stopping developers from using air-push or whatever if that’s still better than not using it (in the short term at least) because its a matter of getting paid for what you did as dev. In either way, you’ll end up paying for the apps. If you really really don’t want ads, go and build your own stuff, its an awesome sensation too.

          • nachhh

            To me the threat here is how to make ads more related/engaged with user taste and pleasure, so its a nice experience to get and ad.

        • http://www.facebook.com/nathanjshaffer Nathan Shaffer

          The reason no one pays for apps is because there are so many developers making free apps. You cant flood the market place with free stuff and then complain that no one wants to pay for it.

          • https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=net.davidcesarino.android.tidetableslight David

            I think it doesn’t matter when the Market is filled with free stuff, because most of the free stuff is horrible to begin with. And I can always find good, paid apps that are worth it.

            There will *always* be a place for good stuff, priced accordingly.

            The difference, IMO, is that, since the financial barrier into the Android Market is much shorter ($25 once) than in the App Store ($99 yearly), the horrible apps can afford to be free in the Market, but are priced at 0.99 cents in the App Store. I had an iPhone for a brief time before I even developed anything (found it boring and not advanced enough — too simple), and that was my impression. Games is a different area that I can’t comment, however (don’t play much).

            I also think that there is a higher percentage of misers (sorry, that’s my opinion) and low-profile smartphone users (use just the phone part, basically) in Android than in iOS, people that is not used to pay for content (about piracy, it’s mixed for what I’ve seen). But that’s because of the higher number of low-cost devices available there (which is a good thing, there should be a place for everybody). Anyway, you just have to keep in mind that the entire Android demography may not be interested in your app, and have a chance with probably just the middle and high profile users (with the best devices). I have a free and a paid app and I noticed that the number of cheaper devices is much higher in the free app than in the paid one. Usual and expected. But the happy free users may drive your brand up and high on visibility. Again, that happened to me.

            If you ask me, I think that the iOS way is too restrictive to the general user, and maybe even the one-two-app good developer (the indie may be more successful with the iOS model, not sure). It’s not suitable for everybody, unless they also start selling old and outdated iPhone for cheap. But that will damage the brand and the appeal of the Apple iPhone, I think. No wonder the plans about giving free iPhones on carriers have stalled a bit since last year rumors.

            The higher the demography involved, the better, in the long run (again, my opinion). It’s up to you to specialize inside that broad audience. When the mobile OS Markets mature more, I think we’ll see that happening. iOS ***as it is*** just isn’t for everybody (but it’s very good for whom it is). It’s like requiring that everyone must have the same PC, with the same monitor (or two), same CPU model and same GPU. It just won’t happen.

            Android/WP may be almost, exactly because the so-called fragmentation appeals to different people with different needs. Great that Google made at least the theory about developing for different devices easy. Testing is different, of course.

            Finally, what kills me when I see people complaining about AirPush ads (I don’t like nor use them), is that they refuse to pay for the paid app, and say they may even jump ship to another OS (they common talk about iOS) because of the ADs in general. I call it bluff… in my small experience I’ve found that the ones that complain about having too much free stuff with ADs in the Android Market are exactly the ones that are less likely to pay for content, no matter how illogical at first that may seem.

  • http://www.Edge.BI Itai Levitan

    Question for advertisers is how to measure the effectiveness of mobile advertising.

    One way is through Edge.BI – check out a real-life example from AdMob campaigns linkedin to Android Marketplace registrations
    http://www.edge.bi/mobile-advertising/

  • johann

    I am using Airpush and CPM’s are tremendous with also a friendly team…with Admob I’m getting like $.09 CPM’s on my Android app, that is ridiculous and the developers cannot build good free apps with that.

    • Charles

      I will immediately uninstall any app that uses Airpush and ensure that no further notifications based on Airpush happen. So, if that’s your definition of success, keep using it.

  • http://1mobo.com/ 1MOBO

    Great Article, an to add to it would be Blutooth Marketing Devices. “Bluetooth Marketing” is working for Thousands of people an Corporations around the World daily. It’s a Completely FCC complaint Permission Base Mobile Phone Advertising System with a Amazing 92% Open rate… No Spamming needed Here.

    It just Works when you have the Right Product for your tageted Mobile customer! It a Win, Win with no Avertising cost for both Consumer and Advertiser’s alike. Owning a portable Advertising Device just changes the Game, Would’nt you agree?

    Your Devoted Reader,
    Steven Anderson

  • george f

    Do send me any more airpush things at all thank you!!!

  • roy l

    well ive been at the user end of this program, and i must admit, its a terrible idea.
    there was an excellent app called call blocker, after a update i noticed all this spam on my notification bar, after looking into it i found airpush – thus that app no longer resides on our phones, the dev had a mailware report and -ve comments made.
    any app with this sort of technology will be removed no matter how good the app is, its spam end of, ironically the app i found it on was suppose to stop spam txts and calls.

  • DoubleD

    Does anyone have instructions on how to permanently block notifications asking to upload airpush daily I remove them. It is clearly our right to deny any service. when

  • http://airpush.com support

    Hello,

    If you recently received an Airpush ad, this came from an application you downloaded that is using our service. Airpush is an advertising network created for Android developers to effectively monetize their free applications.

    If you do not wish to support applications with Airpush you can permanently opt-out of receiving our ads by downloading our opt-out app here https://market.android.com/details?id=com.airpush.optout OR please visit out opt-out page: http://www.airpush.com/optout using this will remove your Android device from our network.

    Thanks,
    Airpush Support Team

    • SirEdwardTrollington

      No thanks. I’d rather just contribute to your decline in the market by shrinking your market share (i.e., uninstalling any apps that use AirPush.) Tried doing it your way with an “opt-out,” and received an alleged “unknown error, please try again later” in your app. Nice try, but you’ve proven what slime your company really is. Find another way to push ads if you want to make revenue. Notification bar is off limits.

  • roy 2

    I hope airpush falls off the face of the planet! What a terrible idea and invasion of privacy…

  • Airpush_sucks

    Yes airpush, I understand that I can opt-out and have done exactly that. Even after permanently opting out, will still never install another app from a developer that uses airpush.

  • Airpush_sucks

    BTW, If you have an android phone, do yourself a favor and get the airpush detector app.

  • Labest1

    QUIT SENDING SHIT TO MY PHONE YOU EVIL INTRUSIVE SON OF A _ITCH!!!

  • Keith

    I will not opt-out from this advertising method. I will simply uninstall any and every app that uses airpush. there may be a long stand-off here but we’ll see who can last longer. soon your ads will be blocked by a clever hero and you’ll still be the big bad advertising company. Stay out of my notification area! You were never invited!

  • Airpush-virus

    I scanned my apps (most of them are installed by my kid) and force uninstalled any app which comes with airpush. I will do this regularly to make sure NO AIRPUSH is stay on my phone. Airpush is like virus.

  • edd

    Lets make it real simple, If you want it free you will have ads.If you do not like ads buy a game
    I think developers should use this program to make a living. BUT i also think they should put the game up for a price with no ads and give the customer the choice…it takes hundreds of hours to desighn a game

  • Ben Curry

    Airpush will be gone soon. Consumers will get so angry over this that they will complain to congress and get this practice banned. Do not buy their stock as the business will die once this happens.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dave-Russell/1265359834 Dave Russell

      Yep, and when that happens free apps will be so riddled with in-app advertising that shows up on the screen while using the app, that they will be essentially unuseable.

      • Hardy Henneberg

        That is not a problem – as long as there are other apps.
        On the contrary, this will push android users to use paid apps.
        The real problem now, is that developers escape from android, because chances to earn money are small, so android apps will be either poor, or they will only be made, when they have been a big succes on IOS and Windows.
        And that will move the users to other platforms, and start the fall of android.

        • SirEdwardTrollington

          So it’s one year later. How’s that “fall of Android” working out for you so far?

  • Johnnieike

    AIRPUSH SUCKS REALLY BAD

  • Johnnieike

    Airpush is and should be LABELLED A VIRUS

  • Hardy Henneberg

    Airpush is the only decent Ad Network !

    Other networks do not pay a decent amount back to the developer.
    Developers making free apps, using those networks are considered blacklegs (strikebreakers) – they destroy the market.
    Customers installing those apps without clicking the adds are parasites.

    Android Developers of All Countries, Unite!

    • Cr

      Fuck you slime! we will boycott all apps with airpush. See how much money you make then, virus developer.

      • Hardy Henneberg

        Thank for your comment Cr. However, I don’t think it brought much new to the debate.
        It is of course everybodys right to boycott apps with airpush, but if you are the (me, me, me , give me) kind of person, who doesn’t pay for your apps anyway, the effect of your boycott will be zero.

  • Gazzmin

    I wouldn’t have mind making ads-free apps and selling it for a small fee (e.g. 99 cents) if only Google had allowed me to. Problem is not all developers in every country are able to sell their apps (stupid Google policy). So, i have to resort to putting ads in my free apps to make some money, and airpush is the only advertiser paying anything near reasonable.