Blyk comes out of the dark

Blyk, the much anticipated ad-supported mobile network, is to reveal its colours soon. A press conference is scheduled for Monday 24th September. Announced earlier this year, Blyk will offer free calls to its audience of 16–24 year olds via targetted advertising on their phones. The launch is timed for the start of the new school term in the UK.

The virtual operator is using the Orange network. Co-founder and backer Pekka Ala-Pietila is a former president of Nokia, so it’s perhaps no surprise that it will also use technology from Nokia Siemens Networks.

Blyk, which is giving itself 3-4 months to make an impact on the UK market, will use real-time feedback on what “the kids” are doing to help brands with the targetting process.

They seem to be biting.

Back in March advertisers, including Buena Vista, Coca-Cola, I-play Mobile Gaming, L’Oreal Paris, StepStone and confirmed that they will be among the first advertisers to use the Blyk network.

At the Mobile User Experience conference in London earlier this month, Antti Ohrling, co-founder, said that messaging, not WAP or data services, remains the most effective mobile advertising and marketing tactic for younger audiences since 73% do not use expensive mobile data services.
Ohrling’s research suggests that 71% of mobile phone customers would appreciate receiving advertising messages targeted to their interests.