Why mo­bile mar­ket­ing is not a “fringe chan­nel”

Con­text, au­to­ma­tion, and pre­dic­tions are just some of what mo­bile mar­ket­ing of­fers in this highly con­nected re­gion.

Singapore Business Review - - LEGAL BRIEFING -

As the mo­bile mar­ket­ing in­dus­try has been grow­ing at an un­prece­dented rate, what can mar­keters do to keep abreast of dy­namic de­vel­op­ments and pro­duc­tively en­gage con­sumers? Scott An­der­son, chief mar­ket­ing of­fi­cer, Sitecore, says mo­bile mar­ket­ing doesn’t only in­volve tablets or smart­phones as much as it does the ac­tual mo­bil­ity of the con­sumer who’s al­ways on the go.

“The con­sumer is now mo­bile. Not only via tablets or smart­phones but now trav­el­ling in con­nected cars, wear­ing fit­ness bands, and in­stalling con­nected ap­pli­ances,” he notes. “Mar­keters should fo­cus less on de­sign­ing for the small screen and fo­cus more on how to main­tain a smart and on-go­ing con­ver­sa­tion with in­di­vid­u­als, wher­ever they are, on any de­vice, at the pre­cise mo­ment when they re­quire as­sis­tance.”

In pur­suit of con­text

An­der­son cites a sur­vey by Sitecore and Van­son Bourne, which says 61% of con­sumers have a mo­bile de­vice on and near them for an av­er­age of 10 hours per day, whilst a whop­ping 84% say they re­search on their mo­bile de­vice be­fore pur­chas­ing on­line, with 80% con­sid­er­ing the mo­bile ex­pe­ri­ence as a pri­or­ity in the pur­chas­ing de­ci­sion. “For brands, it all starts with the mo­bile mind­set. Un­der­stand­ing con­sumer habits and pref­er­ences in a rapidly chang­ing land­scape is the start­ing point. Con­sumers want mar­keters to de­liver what they need ‘in con­text’ to what­ever it is they are try­ing to achieve right at that mo­ment,” he says.

Ni­cholas Kon­topou­los, global vice pres­i­dent of fast growth mar­kets, au­di­ence en­gage­ment mar­ket­ing, SAP Hy­bris, reck­ons mo­bile mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion is em­pow­er­ing mar­keters to be smarter with con­tent and mes­sag­ing across all de­vices. “As mar­keters, we are con­stantly look­ing to cre­ate a bet­ter, more com­pelling, and en­gag­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for our cus­tomers,” he says. “Mo­bile mar­ket­ing au­to­ma­tion seeks to en­able mar­keters to pro­vide that mag­i­cal di­men­sion known as con­text – en­gag­ing each con­sumer per­son­ally and as an au­di­ence of one.” Kon­topou­los says au­to­ma­tion can come in var­i­ous forms to take mo­bile mar­ket­ing to the next level. “Tech­nolo­gies and ca­pa­bil­i­ties like GPS, geo-fenc­ing, and bea­cons can be lever­aged to present mar­ket­ing mes­sages based on a con­sumer’s real-world lo­ca­tion and prox­im­ity seam­lessly. Cou­pled with the abil­ity to con­tex­tu­alise, mo­bile mar­ket­ing can el­e­vate your brand’s abil­ity to en­gage even fur­ther in 2017.”

So­cial me­dia in­volve­ment

There will be growth in mo­bile us­age along with an in­crease of so­cial me­dia us­age to find and share var­i­ous in­for­ma­tion, shares Geral­dine Wong, chief mar­ket­ing of­fi­cer, SEEK Asia. So­cial me­dia sites have a “buy” but­ton where pur­chas­ing oc­curs on those sites in­stead of through a third party, she notes. Mo­bile mar­ket­ing comes in cus­tom apps and mo­bile-tar­get­ted cam­paigns to spe­cific cus­tomers. “More­over, in­creas­ing us­age of mo­bile apps will be seen as part of our daily lives. Mo­bile mar­ket­ing will in­crease its pop­u­lar­ity as it can help busi­nesses to reach a spe­cific group of au­di­ence more ef­fec­tively as well as build­ing bet­ter cus­tomer re­la­tion­ships,” ex­plains Wong.

Wendy John­stone, VP mar­ket­ing, APAC, Sales­force, notes that Asia Pa­cific is home to half of the world’s mo­bile phone sub­scribers and the largest num­ber of wire­less In­ter­net connections. The on­line com­merce land­scape is dom­i­nated by the re­gion, pri­mar­ily driven by mo­bile de­vices. “By 2020, there will be 6.1 bil­lion smart­phone users in the world, with nearly 2 bil­lion com­ing from Asia Pa­cific. Suf­fice to say, mo­bile users are a force to be reck­oned with and right­fully be at the cen­tre of a mar­keter’s mar­ket­ing strat­egy and plan.”

Mo­bile is here to stay

John­stone also cites a sur­vey amongst mar­keters glob­ally, where 79% say mo­bile is core to busi­ness. “Mo­bile as a mar­ket­ing plat­form (such as mo­bile apps) and a mar­ket­ing chan­nel (such as SMS) has seen a surge in us­age be­tween 2015 and 2016, hit­ting a triple-digit growth within a year,” she notes. The per­cent­age of mar­keters who are re­al­is­ing a re­turn on their mo­bile in­vest­ment also jumped 147% from 2015 to 2016. “Once a fringe chan­nel, mo­bile mar­ket­ing has be­come a main­stay,” stresses John­stone.

She adds that pre­dic­tions will rule the fu­ture, and the mar­ket­ing world, es­pe­cially con­tent mar­keters. “There is a par­a­digm shift in the way con­sumers want to be en­gaged. They ex­pect brands and mar­keters to proac­tively en­gage them,” ex­plains John­stone. “If I bought a six-month vi­ta­mins sup­ply, I ex­pect the brand to send me a re­minder that my sup­ply is run­ning out and even come to ex­pect a loy­alty dis­count so I make a re­pur­chase.”

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