One of the toughest things about ad-funded initiatives is the balance between creating a good consumer experience and driving interaction which leads to ROI. This can often be hard to do because ad-funded models tend to be much more aggressive than your regular type of advertising

Considering that you are basically getting paid in one way or another to view ads, whether it’s free drinksfree photo albums or free X-Factor calls, it’s not surprising that advertisers want a little more bang for their buck.

Myscreen is a mobile advertising technology company that lets subscribers get minutes and other perks in exchange for viewing, watching or clicking on ads.

Sounds easy but what’s the catch? Ads show up on your screen after every… single…call. It’s the revenge of the pop up ad.

The service is obviously opt-in, users have to install the application first. Profile data will be based on customer preferences when they sign up with a mobile operator.

I can see the appeal of this in the pre-paid market with free minutes on offer but even then I think it’s going to be seen as a ‘necessary evil’ for users to get their freebies. And as a advertiser, is that what you really want to happen when people interact with your brand?

Moconews pointed out that free minutes and texts aren’t as attractive as it use to be. Pre-pay plans on networks like Orange gives users free Internet, SMS or calls for just topping up £10.

As a consumer, is the end of your phone call the best time to advertise to you on your mobile? My natural behaviour after a call is to press the end call button several times to get to the home screen so I can press keylock and put the phone back in my pocket. If I have to wait for my bumbling Blackberry or Sony Ericsson to load an app I’ll probably smash it against something. I’ve seen a few of these types of mobile advertising applications and it always makes me think that handset technology isn’t quite there yet to create ‘advertising utopia’. Idle screen advertising could potentially be one of the best ways to get messages to the consumer but it needs widget enabled home-screens like Android, not bolt on Java apps that interrupt functions.

What would you want in return for having Myscreen on your phone? How many minutes or SMS would it take? That question is often a good gauge of how intrusive people think it is. Let me know.