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Cutting Edge at College First Campus Study Shows Mobile Is #1 Medium for Advertising to Gen Z & Young Millennial StudentsYes, college students show up on campus in the fall with state of the art computers.

Those are probably reserved for doing term papers. Because when it comes to everything else, college students have their mobile phones. And unlike the laptops, smartphones get carried everywhere these young people go.

Fact is, college students are more likely than average smartphone users to admit that it’s mobile where they see relevant ads — and it’s their favorite device, walloping everything, including TV.

Those insights come from a new Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) (and its Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence) report entitled “Generation Z & Young Millennials: Mobile First on Campus.”

“The study, conducted with Qriously, shows that smartphone screens should be the primary medium for reaching today’s college students — the first of Generation Z and last of the Millennial generation to enter young adulthood on campus,” explains the IAB. “These students are more likely than the average smartphone user to cite their mobile phone as the place where they see relevant ads (28 percent vs. 22 percent).”

The study notes that “tailoring plays a role, with respondents stating they are more apt to notice mobile ads adapted to them based on social media and web browsing.”

Trying to reach the men? Male college students were specifically likely to cite mobile as the medium with the most relevant ads they saw (32.5 percent), with only 19 percent feeling that way about TV.

Females were more balanced, with equal number saying mobile and TV were the source of relevant ads.

“Both college men and women unequivocally say that their smartphone is their favorite device, preferring it over any other, including television,” reports IAB.

And here’s the best part, as far as marketers are concerned: the students act on it.

More than half (55 percent) of those polled indicated that they have acted based on seeing a relevant ad on their mobile phone, a higher rate than among typical smartphone owners (49 percent).

“Today’s college students are leading mobile first lives –and will surely take their mobile-first mindset with them into the world after graduation,” said Anna Bager, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Mobile and Video at IAB. “Gen Z and the young Millennials on campus now are tomorrow’s next set of primary consumers and it is apparent that marketers and agencies need to reach this coveted audience on mobile screens.”

The proof is in the purchasing pudding.

“Mobile shopping is a mainstay with those surveyed; almost three out of four (73 percent) say they make purchases via their smartphone — much more than the average smartphone user (66 percent). Nearly a quarter (23 percent) of college students say they “often” make purchases using their smartphones, as compared to 18 percent of average smartphone users.”

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