How to Write Great Mobile Ad Copy . / Credit: Mobile Applications Image via Shutterstock

You know you need to take your company's message mobile, but how? Building an app is only part of the equation. You also need to make sure your businesses message is delivered in a format that works well with mobile technology.

Zephrin Lasker, CEO of Pontiflex, a mobile advertising firm, said businesses can't afford to wait.

"According to JP Morgan, there will be more mobile devices shipped in 2012 than laptops or desktops.  With so many people on smartphones and tablets, small businesses cannot afford to ignore mobile advertising," Lasker said.

Because mobile devices are so different from laptops or desktops, businesses have to adopt different strategies while writing ad copy for mobile devices, he said.  

Lasker offers five simple tips that will help you get the most out of your mobile ad campaigns.

Keep it short. Generally speaking, people don’t interact with long winded content on mobile devices. When it comes to writing mobile ad copy, do not look to Homer or Shakespeare for inspiration. Instead invoke the spirit of Hemingway. Keep it short. Keep it simple.

Use a direct call to action. Be really clear as to what people will get when they interact with your ad. In a few short sentences, you should explain what you want them to do, when you want them to do it, and what they will get in return. For example: Sign up now. Get 20 percent off tote bags. 

Use mobile ad extensions. With mobile ads, you can use unique ad extensions that are not available or not as useful when it comes to online advertising. For example, you can place ad extensions such as click-to call and location extensions next to your ads. These extensions help customers get in touch with your business when they are in your area searching for a relevant product or service.

Display your brand prominently. A mobile ad is often used to establish a fist point of contact. Often, when a customer signs up, you will need to follow up with a more detailed communication via email or text to convey more information or close a sale. 

For example, mobile signup ads allow you to send automated emails to people that have signed up for your ad in real time. In such cases, it is important that you use a clear logo or image that conveys your brand.  You do this so that consumers will be able to match the image in your ad to that in your follow-up email, and recognize your business in follow-up communications.

Measure mobile campaigns separately from desktop campaigns. Beware of the umbrella word "digital." As Matt Lawson, vice president of marketing for Marin Software points out, it is important to measure and optimize mobile search campaigns separately from desktop campaigns.  For example, you have much more latitude in writing copy for search advertisements on desktops – simply because there is more space for ads. On mobile devices, your ad has to show up in the top two or three positions for it to get noticed. 

The same is true for signup ads. Compelling copy with a clear call to action will help you get noticed and outperform your competitors. You have to be much for ruthless with writing and optimizing mobile copy.

Mobile phones represent a great opportunity for businesses to connect with consumers where they are. By keeping advertising clear and simple, businesses can do just that.