Apple announced last week that they were introducing a new mobile advertising format, the iAd. The new adverts will work on the yet unreleased iPhone OS 4 and run on the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. AppScout gives a good overview of the limited information about iAds that has been made available to date.

Although mobile adverts are usually associated with consumer advertising (all the demos Apple gave were of consumer ads and in-game advertising is probably the going to be the biggest user of the format), I think the new format could have a significant impact on our industry, and many other technical B2B markets. Here’s why:

Trade press publishers are increasingly looking towards digital distribution, and many are talking of iPhone/iPad reader applications. iAds presents an opportunity to charge a premium for rich media advertising at a time when most marketing managers view adverts on digital copies as less valuable than print.

iAds will allow more control, allowing advertisers to be sure that their advert has been seen. This will overcome the concern of many advertisers that people will not view the page on which their advert is placed (a situation that is analogous to placing ads in a print copy, but one that appears to concern marketing managers more in this age of measurable digital marketing).

iAds will present a revenue opportunity to the companies providing the digital magazine technology. As competition hots up in the digital space, I expect the cost of publishing digitally to drop dramatically (in fact it’s pretty cheap already), and any way of increasing revenue will be jumped on by the likes of Nxtbook, Ceros and the many other players in this market.

iAds will allow a pay-per-impression approach for advertising associated with digital magazines. In one stroke the question of digital magazine readership disappears, making advertisers more comfortable about advertising in digital copies.