Since the emergence of the smartphone, advertising companies have been trying to figure out the best way to utilize smartphone advertising. From opt-in text messaging, to rich media banners, to mobile video advertising, we’ve seen it all – but does any of it actually work?

New comScore research suggests that it does.

Research shows statistically significant lifts for the test group vs. the control group in aided awareness (+20%), favorability (+4%), likelihood to recommend (+22%), and purchase intent (+28%). The observed lifts appear to be the strongest near the bottom of the marketing funnel, with the most notable impact being on ‘purchase intent’, a metric that correlates with in-store sales.

So why do mobile ads appear to work well at the bottom of the purchase funnel? A possible explanation is that mobile ads often appear when people are out and about, and are either closer to the point of purchase or in a social context where they might recommend a brand.

As more research is compiled across different brands and verticals, we will hopefully be able to shed more light on this increasingly important subject. But in the meantime, advertisers who may be vacillating about their mobile strategy should take note: mobile ads do work in influencing consumers’ brand perceptions.