SAN FRANCISCO: Brands can make in-app advertising more appealing to consumers while also boosting brand sentiment and interaction if they offer rewards, such as premium content or virtual currency, a new study has revealed.

More than two-thirds (67%) of the 1,500 US smartphone owners polled by Forrester Consulting want to be offered a reward in exchange for engaging with an in-app ad while three-quarters (74%) are willing to share digital contact information.

Conducted on behalf of mobile ad platform Tapjoy, "The Value of Rewarded Advertising" study also showed 93% of smartphone owners use apps daily at an average of three hours engagement each.

"Consumers are not only embracing rewarded advertising, they prefer it," said Peter Dille, CMO for Tapjoy. "Consumers want control over the experience and to be empowered with the choice of which ad to engage with, and the rewarded model accomplishes that while driving stronger brand sentiment."

However, the report went on to warn that brands needed to take great care to avoid using in-app ads incorrectly.

Noting the task-oriented mindset of mobile users and the small screen size of their devices, the report found in-app ads are perceived as more disruptive than web page ads or those viewed in online videos.

Almost three-quarters (74%) of US consumers find automatically served in-app ads annoying, Tapjoy said, 69% say they make it harder to enjoy what they're doing, and 65% describe them as interruptive.

"Rewarded in-app advertising takes into account just how personal our mobile devices are and the fact that we're in a different mindset when we use them," said Dille.

"Rewarded advertising respects the consumer's role in the advertising ecosystem, which is why advertisers that use it are seeing higher brand affinity and deeper engagements than any other form of advertising," he added.

Data soured from Tapjoy; additional content by Warc staff