Mobile carrier Orange is set on taking advertising to the handsets and to the masses, by partnering with Blyk, a Finnish mobile advertising specialist. The latter will stop running its own service and allow Orange to use it.
Orange mentioned that it’ll offer special tariffs to its 16 million British customers, provided that they accept targeted ads available via SMS and MMS. Blyk’s 200,000 British members will be free to choose any service afterwards, not being forced to be more on with Orange.
The ideal of mobile advertising is to be unobtrusive and to avoid having your ads annoy the user. Blyk used a model that relied on invitations towards 16 to 24 year olds, that would sign up and receive about 6 advertising messages a day from brands like L’Oreal or Coca-Cola. In exchange, they got free texts and call minutes, which sounds like a fair deal to me.