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SPECIAL REPORT

Mobile to spearhead Internet advertising growth

Dubai, December 9, 2013

The global ad market is on a path of steady recovery, with growth of 3.5 per cent forecast for 2013, followed by 5.1 per cent in 2014 and 5.8 per cent in 2015, according to the latest ZenithOptimedia forecasts.

This growth is being driven by digital innovations, with mobile, by some distance, the fastest-growing segment of internet advertising, said the report “Mobile: The Relationship Channel” released by the Mobile Marketing Association.

As the consumer attention shifts to the screens held in the hand, logic therefore dictates that advertisers also spend their efforts where their consumers are -- the mobile channel.

And as advertisers attempt to make their businesses more productive and boost customer satisfaction and trust, loyalty and CRM programmes are becoming ubiquitous in marketing strategies.

But given that there is a rapid change in consumer habits – the expectation that any desired information or service is available on our mobile devices – how can marketers keep up and win new customers, keep existing ones loyal and increase engagement and grow commitment to the brand?

The answer, not surprisingly, is being where the customer is. The mobile.

Without a doubt, loyalty programmes are an effective way of attracting, retaining and turning consumers into a company’s profitable, and most importantly, the most engaged and therefore valuable customer. In Europe almost 80 per cent of the population is signed up to some kind of loyalty programme. And as the number of mobile devices and their usage continues to rise, marketers will have no choice but to meet their consumers on their desired devices. Mobile is the one true medium that connects the digital to the real world.

A model to manage and measure one-to-one customer relationships on a mobile device, which allows for better returns and an enhanced loyalty schemes as a whole, but how mobile can be used within them.

The unique role that mobile plays

The ultimate aim of any business is more than a one-off sales – it is about engagement, repeat purchase and building a long term trust and loyalty with their customers.

In a multi-channel world where consumers carry their phones with them every moment of their waking lives, there exists a tremendous opportunity for brands to engage in a dialogue with their consumers in a way that is personal, relevant and most importantly valuable.

The omnipresence of mobile means that this device plays an intimate role in consumer lives, blurring the physical and digital worlds. Bank of America predicts $67.1 billion in revenue from smartphone and tablet retail purchasing by European and US shoppers in 2015 (Source: Business Intelligence).

In the UK alone, 39 per cent of the total UK mobile population conducts shopping activities on their mobile phones, while 7 million actually purchase goods and services via their device – an increase of 46 per cent (Comscore, 2013).

According to eMarketer’s latest forecast- this year, 18.8 per cent of all digital ad spending in North America will go towards mobile internet ads. Western Europe and Asia Pacific are nearly tied this year, with 12.6 per cent and 12.3 per cent of all digital spending occurring on mobile, respectively. Western Europe, meanwhile, is expected to expand its share more rapidly, as a relatively mature desktop ad market gives over to mobile channel.

Consumers ‘consume’ technology

Mobile can be viewed as both the cause and enabler of changes in consumer behaviour.

Consumers are increasingly media multi-tasking with more than 8 out of 10 mobile media users (84 per cent) simultaneously interacting with their TVs or PCs, according to a mobile focused research commissioned by Yahoo! among UK mobile media users aged between 16 and 65.

The Future Foundation research found that 70 per cent of British respondents said they would be interested in a real-time online price-monitoring service that alerted them the moment the price of a product fell, and 62 per cent in a service that would move money automatically between savings accounts to make sure they earned the best interest rate.

When one of the biggest remaining challenges for marketers is to be prepared to have the right conversation with the consumers, when and how the consumers want to have it, the mobile channel is becoming the key touch point in their dialogue with those consumers.

Mobile devices are redefining how consumers use their time

It is not news that mobility is now reshaping mainstream consumer behaviour in fundamental ways.

A typical mobile consumer probably starts the day checking emails and news/information on phone. The consumer then checks it during a spare moment, asking the phone for the weather, train times, check scheduled appointments.

Get lost, and use the maps to get back on track. Want to browse? Click on an app. Want an answer? It’s on the phone. Bored? Play with your mobile device. Waiting for the bus? Check the phone. Pay for the coffee? Swipe the phone. Whatever the question is, mobile is the answer.

A recent research in the UK conducted this year by O2 and Samsung reveals that UK users spend on average of 119 minutes a day on their smartphones. The research also showed that in comparison to last year, a greater proportion of smartphone users reported using the device for almost every activity they were asked about.

The two most popular activities were found to be browsing the internet at 24 per cent and checking social networks at 16 per cent.

It comes as no surprise, of course, that if buying habits are going mobile, leisure time is also being spent on mobile – and not just on social networks but also for activities such as travel and entertainment.

Social media is, however, increasingly seen as the driving force of smartphone usage. A Nielsen study at the end of last year indicated that 47 per cent of the world’s social networking and 33 per cent in Europe is done via mobile phones. Smartphones, with their large touchscreens and built-in cameras, are able to integrate social networks with their user interfaces in a way that will only see their use on the mobiles grow further.

This will allow brands to take the next steps towards creating more tailored and personalised services for customers.

With an increasing penetration in smartphones and tablets (according to Cisco, by the end of 2013, there will be more mobile devices on Earth than people), consumers are also increasingly demanding ‘anytime-anywhere’ computing that allows them to consume, share and create content with ease. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Social media | Mobile marketing |

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