Blyk's mobile ads might be working after all

Startup MVNO Blyk, which provides a cheap mobile service to young people in return for sending them “targetted” ad messages, has launched a media shop designed for advertisers and agencies to source information from. So far there are campaign results from brands including Penguin, COI, L’Oreal, Boots and Brylcreem. Ad campaign briefs can also be sent directly from the site.

However, there remains some questions about the service which launched in September last year.

Rumours circulated a while back that teenagers were switching off the messaging from advertisers. However, I have made some enquiries from people who ought to know and the opposite would appear to be the case. Apparently the 16-24 year olds which Blyk restricts the service to are lapping up the free airtime they get in exchange for ads.

One source says: “Stories like this are hilarious and made up by people who don’t know what the hell is going on in new media. Blyk is more powerful than anyone realises. Blyk isnt going to shoot down any negative press as it is often no bad thing people take their eye off the ball.”

I also hear that Blyk has been successful enough for it to start preparing to roll out to several more countries from its European base.

If all this is true, then Blyk may be onto more than many critics first thought – that targetted advertising via mobile is not as annoying as it might sounds, especially to a media-savvy youth audience.