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Weather Channel generates more mobile traffic than desktop

The Weather Channel is seeing more traffic from mobile than desktop, highlighting the fact that consumers are increasingly relying on their mobile devices for content.

The Weather Channel has based its mobile strategy on developing a line of multiplatform services, including applications, mobile Web and SMS programs. The publisher has also tapped into GPS services to target consumers based on their location.

?We understand that buying mobile media can be difficult, but as a publisher we are looking to make it easy,? said Patrick McCormack, vice president of mobile sales and strategy at Weather.com, New York.

Mobile is king
Weather.com launched its mobile Web site in 1999 and has since expanded to a line of mobile services including applications.

According to a study conducted by the Nielsen Co., Weather.com?s mobile site generates 1.8 billion monthly visits.

Additionally, the site brings in 32 million unique visitors.

The Nielsen Co. also found that Weather.com generates 28 percent of the total mobile audience.

Twenty-four percent of Weather.com users interact with both the company?s desktop and mobile tools.

Weather.com has apps for the iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry and Windows 7 devices.

Weather.com claims that the publisher?s apps have been downloaded 56 million times.

Weather.com?s apps are also bring in 100,000 downloads per day.

Fifty-five percent of consumers who have downloaded Weather.com apps use them at least once a day.

For Weather.com?s iPad users, 47 percent of consumers visit the app multiple times a day and 76 percent of the audience visits at least once a day.

In comparison, a study from Localytics found that 26 percent of all mobile users downloaded an app and only used it once.

Weather.com has also found some interesting tablet trends.

Specifically, Weather.com has found an increase in tablet usage from Friday to Sunday each week, showing the at-home behavior of the device.

Similarly, the bulk of iPad activity takes place around 7 a.m. and in between 7 p.m. and 11 p.m.

Mobile Web activity remains constant across the day.

?Mobile has become an integral part of our business,? Mr. McCormack said.

Climate control
Mobile advertising makes up a large percentage of Weather.com?s strategy.

?Weather is our main and core mission,? Mr. McCormack said.

?What makes our ads work is the context they are delivered in,? he said.

The Weather Channel recently created an app based on the cable network?s popular television show From the Edge of Peter Lik.

The app served as a companion guide to the on-air TV show.

The app was downloaded more than 19,000 times in the first month.

Additionally, 50 percent of users downloaded the app while watching the TV show.

Weather.com is also able to serve relevant ads based on a user?s location and current weather.

Recently, fast food restaurant Wendy?s used mobile ads on Weather.com?s apps to promote its berry-flavored Frosty drink to users with temperatures more than 75 degrees.

Subway also advertised its line of breakfast sandwiches based on time of day of users.

Coming up, Weather.com is updating its iPad app, which include new unique opportunities for advertisers.

For instance, GM could advertise and have one of its cars featured on a road if it is raining near a user.

?We?ve taken 18 months of learnings into this app,? Mr. McCormack said.

?From an advertising point of view, the app offers clients the chance to own unique sponsor slots in the app,? he said. 

Final Take
The From the Edge iPad app