AskKinjo bows new ad mojo

New mobile marketing service offers hyper-targeted ad ops reaching on-the-go Torontonians.

You might want to make room in your mobile marketing budgets for a new interactive ad channel from AskKinjo. The Toronto-based co’s audio info service – a first in the country in personalized, location-specific hands-free format – debuts amid growing buzz about mobile’s ad potential.

Free to any mobile phone user – Virgin, Bell Mobility, Telus or Rogers – needing immediate info about geo-specific traffic, parking, gas prices, restaurants, nightclubs or ATMs, the service is accessible any time of day by dialing #KINJO. It has been attracting mobile phone users since it launched last September, with 1000 users expected by the end of the month.

Opt-in users are presented with interactive audio ads tailored to their interests, time and location during the 10-to-12-second wait-time while the requested info is being retrieved. The contextual ads can be delivered on any chosen time or location. Users can immediately connect with advertisers, place orders or receive a coupon or further information by text message.

AskKinjo ads don’t require large screens, keyboards, data plans or downloaded application from the user, making the audio ads deliverable to all mobile phone users and enabling quick and accurate ROI. The service’s business model charges per listen, at CPC- and CPL-competitive rates.

With free content and no costly platform dependence or complicated interfaces, the service also touts the elimination of many of the issues currently hampering the budding mobile ad industry. The platform also reaches mobile users who do not have a smartphone – currently about 85% of the mobile market. And with the forthcoming hands-free regulation for drivers taking effect soon, AskKinjo’s audio ads could be one smart media buy.

Advertisers currently on deck include MADD Canada, KeysToUs, 5th Element and Provence Delices.

AskKinjo’s #KINJO service is currently being promoted via the Internet through skyscraper ads on, as well as through Google AdWords, Yahoo! and Facebook and MSN/Sympatico. Consumer pub reviews have appeared on CTV’s Webamia and on 680 News as well as at Mobile Monday Toronto events, an association of professionals in the mobile industry.

AskKinjo has plans to expand its services across North America over the next two years. Current coverage zones span from Whitby to Burlington and from Lake Ontario to Lake Simcoe.