This guest post was written by James Harrison, UK Country Manager at Oxygen8 Group, providers of Mobile Messaging and Location Based Solutions. He has 12 years experience within the telecommunications industry, holding management positions at companies including BT and Phones4u.
3 Mobile Marketing Technologies to Watch In 2013
There’s no doubt that the presence of mobile has had a massive impact on our everyday lives, allowing us to access the information we want, when we want it. This, in turn, has presented an inviting avenue into the realms of marketing and advertising, providing businesses with the opportunity to reach consumers instantly.
In a recent piece written by Digiday, Brian Morrissey suggests that “the year of the mobile” has been forecasted for the last four years and that as much as everyone talks about the power of mobile and how it will change marketing and advertising, the truth is that no one has actually figured it out yet.
Or have we?
Statistics would suggest that this year, brands and advertisers have begun to realise the potential of mobile marketing. In the first half of the year, UK mobile advertising grew by a staggering 132% to £181.5m, according to the IAB report conducted by PwC. That figure is forecasted to grow to £511m for the full year. To put this into context, UK mobile advertising generated £203m in the whole of 2011, and in 2010, that figure was just £83m.
Looking at the statistics there’s no denying that the use of mobile marketing is definitely rising and that it is a viable marketing medium for many businesses. So perhaps it’s slow development in how businesses are using mobile that’s stopping the medium from having its moment.
The 2012 U.S. AdReaction Report from Milward Brown has found that consumer experiences are falling short of high expectations and has highlighted that brands need to step up their game. The report has suggested that marketers should start targeting ads based on the person, the moment and location as well as developing integrated campaigns that use display ads to drive traffic to an optimised Web site or app.
2013 will be about developing a mobile strategy that takes every single consumer into consideration, long gone is the blanket effect. We are moving into an era where, if done correctly, no mobile marketing message should be unwelcome.
Below are three trends to watch out for in 2013 that could give mobile the year it’s been waiting for:
Although NFC technology has been around for a while, it has been brought to light by the Samsung Galaxy S3, and since then many new devices have followed suit in implementing the technology, although Apple surprisingly decided not to include it in their latest offering, the iPhone 5.
Anyone supporting the rise of NFC would have no doubt been disappointed by Apple’s decision. With analysts expecting the company to sell 46.5 million devices this quarter alone, the inclusion of NFC would have helped the technology gain traction a lot quicker, however, there has been some good news to come out of Apple HQ. The iPhone 5S is reportedly already on the cards and with an anticipated launch date of early 2013, Apple could be big catalysts in helping NFC reach its prime in 2013.
Although NFC is commonly associated with making mobile payments, it has a lot more to offer and the potential uses are endless. It’s this potential that’s making brands and marketers consider NFC as a valid avenue for advertising to mobile users.
Moo, the online supplier of custom business cards, has already boarded the NFC train. They are currently experimenting with NFC business cards, with a planned rollout in 2013. Through simply scanning a business card with your NFC-enabled device you can customise the action that comes next, for example, you can open up your LinkedIn profile, YouTube video or any URL on the web. You can even change the content on the card after it’s been handed out.
Popular women’s magazine, Marie Claire, has also followed suit, implementing NFC technology into their magazine, after joining with Nuffield Health to bring what they claim is the first NFC-enabled print ad. The ad gives readers access to a free two-day gym membership pass, once they have scanned the ad with their device.
These are two great examples of how to best make use of NFC and we can certainly expect more developments in the near future, especially from those brands eager to find new ways to market their products and services.
2013 could be the breakthrough year for NFC, but it all depends on the likes of big players such as Apple backing the technology.
Have your say: Were Apple wrong not to include NFC into the iPhone 5?
2. Location, Location, Location
With so many mobile devices around, brands are looking to engage with mobile users whilst they are on the move. Geofencing is a particular location-based services tool which is gaining traction.
Earlier this year, GAP implemented geofencing into their marketing strategy. The clothing giant placed ads at bus stops and other transit locations in New York, San Francisco and Chicago. Geofences (virtual perimeters) were then created around these ads and people inside the geofence were shown mobile ads offering GAP coupons on particular sites and apps from Zynga. The campaign generated a 0.93% CTR, more than double the average CTR for mobile ads and also showcased how geofencing could be used as part of a marketing strategy.
Moving forward in the realms of location based marketing, privacy concerns are an obstacle to overcome. However, if brands can build trust and offer people enough benefits to share their location, they will.
It is also important that brands move away from the mind-set of being solely locationally aware, to becoming contextually aware. For example, serving a voucher to someone who happens to hit a geofence doesn’t necessarily always work. The rise of the concept ‘big data’ is coming into play, allowing brands to bring together all of the data they have on individual customers and use it to make an informed decision on what type of location experience best suits their genetic make-up.
Have your say: Would you be happy for a company to use your location to serve you advertisements?
3. The Second Screen
People love to use the “second screen” whilst watching TV. Around 80% of smartphone owners use their devices in front of the TV, whilst 81% of tablet owners use their devices in front of the TV. With mobile device sales on the rise, broadcasters and advertisers are given a huge opportunity to engage with viewers.
Zeebox, a social TV app, allows viewers to engage and interact with their favourite TV shows. With its latest partnership with Sky, the app has the ability to recognise the channel the viewer is watching and allow the user to change channels with ease. Advertisers are then able to offer viewers click-to-buy tags which synchronise with their TV ads.
With a new Australian version of the app just launched and a USA app in development, Zeebox is leading the second screen phenomenon and with its latest integration into the Sky+ app, second screen marketing could explode in 2013.
Have your say: Do you use your mobile phone or tablet whilst watching TV?
If you haven’t got a mobile marketing strategy, then quite simply you should have. With around 75% of the world’s population now with access to a mobile phone, you can’t afford not to have a mobile marketing strategy in place. It’s not a case of jumping on the bandwagon with mobile marketing; it’s about understanding your audience, what they want and selecting the best ways to reach them via the mobile platform.