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Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) has reportedly hired a new leader for its iAd effort, in hopes of getting its home-grown solution for in-app advertising off the ground. And it has poached a top executive from one of its most recent foes, with Adobe’s Todd Teresi set to join the company.
There aren’t many companies in technology who have had a better record than Apple over the last five years, but iAd, an Apple-designed technology for inserting compelling advertisements within mobile apps, is not among its hits. There’s a general interest among big brands for a better type of in-app advertisement than the banner, but those brands have balked at the up-front costs of participating in iAd campaigns as well as Apple’s trademark preference for control of those campaigns.
Teresi’s job, according to a Bloomberg report, will be to convince more brands and advertising agencies to bet on iAd, which Digitas North America president Colin Kinsella told our audience at paidContent Advertising 2011 could lead to a “creative renaissance” in the mobile ad industry. iAd allows advertisers to create ads with richer graphics and interactive elements that simply aren’t possible with the usual mobile ad formats, since iAd is built directly into iOS itself.
But it hasn’t been compelling enough, and so Apple has been chopping the price of entry into the program. Last we heard, the company required brands to spend a minimum of $400,000 just to participate, down from $1 million when it was first launched. It also made changes to the way it charges advertisers for ad clicks. Andy Miller, who led the iAd program after Apple acquired his startup Quattro Wireless, left Apple last year.
Teresi is a veteran of Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) and Adobe (NSDQ: ADBE), where he is currently vice president and general manager, media solutions. According to his LinkedIn profile, he was in charge of Adobe’s efforts to sell analytic tools to digital publishers and video providers, with an emphasis on mobile technology.