First Hop Paves the Way for Advertising-Funded Mobile Content Services

First Hop, the mobile service control company, announced the launch of its Mobile Advertising Solution. This will provide mobile operators and service providers with the infrastructure needed to support an ad-funded content business and enable them to attract additional revenue from advertisers looking to expand into mobile.

The solution allows operators to offer mobile advertising, ad-funded services, or branded and sponsored content using person to person messaging, multimedia broadcast, and browsing services. The solution also enables the operator to develop new subscription models such as ad-funded content services. Mobile operators will be able to roll out a service model which offers users free content or free text or minutes in exchange for receiving advertisements.

The solution has the capability to target any segment of a mobile operator's subscriber base with specific advertising campaign messages; from large groups of any specification or size, right down to a single person.

Timo T. Laaksonen, Chief Executive Officer of First Hop, explained: "Advertising and mobile will finally meet in 2007. The First Hop Mobile Advertising Solution allows the operator to quickly ad-enable its whole service delivery platform.

"Mobile has the potential to become the preferred digital marketing channel with promotion and advertising being targeted at a single user level. Mobile operators that deploy the solution will be able to generate significant new revenue streams by being in a position to attract big brands and external advertisers," he added.

Timo T. Laaksonen concluded: "We are already in the process of running a number of deployments and trials in mobile advertising and campaigning with operators across Europe and Asia-Pacific. In 2006, First Hop helped 10 operators launch highly targeted services at specific customer segments using the First Hop Business Intelligence, Service Promotion, and Personalisation solutions. We have the technology, experience and expertise to quickly equip operators with the capability to launch ad-funded and sponsored services."

Launched at 3GSM World Congress 2007, the First Hop Mobile Advertising Solution is a full, yet modular service delivery platform optimised for the advertising business model. As mobile advertising and sponsored services are relatively new business concepts, conventional service delivery platforms do not provide operators with the capabilities required to support an ad-funded business.

The First Hop Mobile Advertising Solution is equipped to create sponsored Person-to-Person and Application-to-Person messaging; to run targeted SMS, MMS, WAP Push campaigns; and to distribute personalized banner advertising. The solution also includes subscriptions and profiling, response and usage tracking; reporting and campaign statistics, advertising budget quota control and billing capabilities.