SAN JUAN, PR — Uber is known for getting you from A to B, and for bringing you a KFC – but now it could also deliver ROI.

The company’s riding app offers ad inventory, its cars have started to include ad-supported touchscreens and its food app now includes ad spots allied to purchase data.

In this discussion with industry analyst Joanna O’Connell at Beet Retreat San Juan, Mark Grether, General Manager, Uber Advertising, explains how he is pitching the line-up.

Mobile media

“When you’re in a car, you are in a lean-back situation, which means that you’re actually open-minded to be distracted,” Grether says.

“We know, if someone is on the way to this hotel here, or on the way to the airport or on the way to a Walmart, we can then target an advertisement.

“We have recently launched an in-car opportunity, which gives us the opportunity to engage for about 20 minutes on average.”

Uber’s New Formats Light Up Ad Screens, From Back Seat To Entrée

Uber’s ad drive

The company recently told investment analysts it has passed a $500 million annual run rate for ad sales after growing its advertiser count by 80% year-on-year to 315,000. It charges a $45 CPM for in-app ads, claiming 3% click-through rate.

In addition to offering car tops (ad space fixed to the top of vehicles) as buyable spots, the company recently announced the roll-out of tablet video screens inside many of its drivers’ vehicles in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

It is another example of how the advertising industry is coming to view the car as an ad opportunity, whether it be an autonomous drive or a back-seat ride. In doing so, the industry is finding some unexpected alignment between connected TV formats and the automobile.

Expose and track

At Beet Retreat, Grether explained how Uber Advertising is selling its service to marketers.

“How can you provide incremental bookings, incremental trips, incremental dollars?,” he asked. “It’s all about incrementality.

“At Uber, we have the opportunity to, on the one hand, create awareness on our mobility app, and then measure transactions on our Eats platform … If the restaurant participates in the smaller listings program, they know how many views they will generate. They know how many orders they’ll generate.

“The first dollars work actually harder on our platform compared to where you have already (been)  at your max or close to your max. Having that conversation about incrementality is a good way to (position) Uber as another player in the media mix plan and why money should actually be shifted (to us).”

You’re watching coverage of Beet Retreat San Juan 2023, presented by LiveRamp, Madhive, Magnite, Paramount, T-Mobile Advertising Solutions and VideoAmp. For more videos from the Beet Retreat, please visit this page.