Many brands still do not have a mobile strategy and they now run the risk of being left behind as their rivals embrace mobile with gusto. But it is still not too late, says Graham Nolan, who offers some tips to the laggards.
The digital industry is the best in the world at creating the latest trends and buzzwords. But one true transformative development has emerged over the past decade that forever changes the game – Mobile. Not because digital prophets have been claiming it the year of mobile since…well since as long as I can remember. But because mobile is the closest we’ll ever get to bar coding mankind in this lifetime and will play a central role in the digital transformation of the next decade.
Unlike every major media touch point, mobile knows who you are, where you are, what you search for around you and how you personalise your life. Its smart, intuitive and the more you use it the more it tunes into your profile and preferences. Yet despite this potency, it is staggering just how little priority is given to mobile. Yes there’s lots of talk but in the words of Mondelez Bonin Bough – “Aspiration is meaningless without allocation”. The most prevalent and personal media channel today is taking up a disproportionately high amount of airtime compared to its lower share of investment. This imbalance needs to be addressed and urgently.
Mobile devices now account for 51% of online time yet only 14% of online advertising gets allocated to it. If this stat is a barometer for how mobile is prioritised in terms of head space around the management table, then its a worrying imbalance and points to long held prejudices about screen size capabilities versus desktop and TV’s. Yet Mobile is for many of this generation, the first exposure they will have to the internet and in little over 5 years it’s grown from 12% of internet screen time to just over half of our time spent on the internet. By 2020, it is estimated that 80% of the world will have access to a smartphone, driven by accelerated penetration in developing markets. The days of mobile being the poor relation are coming to an end.
Bringing mobile in from the fringes of your plan and turning it into a leading pillar of your strategy simply requires one to ask the same questions of our overall digital strategy but expect different answers.
Define The Role Mobile Plays For Your Audience
Mobile is extremely prevalent throughout your audience day in the life, from morning to commuting to lean back moments of freedom right until the end of the day. In this multi-screen world we are seeing mobile relevance throughout the day and in many different forms – from entertainment to utility and productivity. Plotting when and where it plays a role is an important starting point.
Define The Role Mobile Can Play For Your Business
Yes mobile now accounts for more time with the consumer, but what can you do with the device from a business perspective? Think brand immersion through mobile engagement, think product trial through mobile incentivisation, think shifting volume through mobile commerce and think brand advocacy through social channels. In the customer care space, design your care channel for mobile – instant, personalized, real time and highly insightful.
Identify The Mobile Mix
Most of our mobile time is spent within apps these days but not all brands have the right to create an app as people only really use about 10 apps regularly. So exploring mobile advertising, affiliate marketing, social mobile and geo-located search ads can enhance your approach to mobile and drive insightful action at the consumer end. If you do explore an app strategy, understand that app downloads are only the first part of your journey, the ongoing app engagement plan is vital to retain loyal users and about 50% of the total app effort.
Think Connected And Long Term
As Data Management Platforms become more commonplace in business and Omni channel marketing takes hold – whats possible on mobile from a single customer identity perspective will become more exciting and compelling as we shift from blanket targeting to more precise and smarter marketing models. Mobile is becoming the central mouthpiece, the screen at the centre of our lives that controls everything else around it.
All we have to do is to look at the innovation that is coming down the line in the form of Google Now or Apple’s Siri strategy to see where mobile is going. Snapchat with 6 billion video views on mobile is beginning to become a very serious content player and foursquare and Open table are joining forces to let you see what restaurant tables are available around you in real time.
Mobile is becoming less fragmented in order to become more powerful. To make it a powerful asset for you then aspirations must be replaced with allocation – prioritise mobile in the form of resource, planning and people.
Graham Nolan is head of strategy with CKSK
First published in Irish Marketing Journal (December 2015)© to order back issues please call 016611660