Verizon Wireless To Test Advertising in VCast; Ad Delivery Shouldn’t Be Personal

(reg. req.) At a conference yesterday, Verizon Wireless CMO John Stratton gave a keynote about advertising, and predicted that as much as 25% to 30% of the $100 billion spent each year on brand advertising will find its way onto the mobile screen.
But beyond that, he said that VZW is testing a program to open up its phones to advertising through a two-tier payment model. He gave a possible example: VZW may charge customers one fee for its VCast service without advertising, and a lower fee for those willing to accept ads “as long as it doesn’t go over a certain threshold.” VCast costs an additional $15 a month, depending on the plan. He did not indicate how much the ad-subsidized version would cost.
But this was very interesting: he said that ads would be able to tap a carrier’s profiles based on demographics, geographic location and content consumption, he said, but “ad delivery cannot be personal. It needs to respect the privacy of the individual while connecting them in a more meaningful way with the message we send.”