As consumers spend more time on mobile devices it would make sense for advertisers to spend more on mobile advertising. However, statistics show that increases in mobile advertising spending are not keeping up with total media usage, according to Elizabeth D'Arcy-Potts, European sales director for CAKE.
In fact, Mary Meeker's 2014 Internet Trends Report states that consumers spend 20% of their total media time on mobile devices, but advertisers only spend 4% of their total budget on mobile advertising. The same report reveals consumers spend just 5% of their total media time looking at printed items, but advertisers continue to spend 19% of their advertising budget on print advertising.
It is clear that advertisers should adjust their spend to better align with actual media usage, but care must be taken when increasing digital ads as consumers can be easily irritated if they receive too many.
Step 1 - Get Ready...
First, make it more meaningful. Advertisers can easily push more sales promotions and engagement campaigns to customers' mobile devices, but care should be taken to communicate with consumers in a way that is actually meaningful for their mobile experience - not distracting, intrusive or irrelevant.
Next, get responsive. With mobile device usage so high, advertisers should also ensure their sites are viewable on mobile devices. Unfortunately, advertisers continue to take mild action on mobile site responsiveness with only 11% of the UK's top 100 brands finishing 2013 with a responsive site, according to the IAB's Mobile Optimised Site study.
Step 2 - Aim...
While advertisers are definitely aware of these statistics, it is actually technical issues that stop them from implementing mobile marketing practices. Barriers to mobile marketing include:
- Designing ads despite a lack of regulated formats;
- Creating multiple landing pages for different devices and screen sizes;
- Showing a mobile user the right landing page for their device's screen size;
- Getting the right technology in place to accurately track and attribute conversions and device limitations which affect usability.
Some of the latest tracking and optimisation technologies, however, can ensure that marketers display the most relevant offers or landing pages to users based on multiple metrics including screen size, operating system, location and more.
Marketers need to consider how they can reach and engage their target audience. Is this with video content, in-application ads or even geo-targeted campaigns with special offers for local stores? Marketers should also consider the audience they are trying to reach and the desired outcomes of their campaigns.
Step 3 - Fire!
This is perhaps the most important step in any mobile marketing strategy: tracking what actually happens. Marketers should use tracking technology to gain valuable insight into the type of customer they are reaching, what is proving successful in converting customers across their campaigns, and how to maximise ad spend.
Marketers can use the data they've gathered to optimise existing and future campaigns. They should control the sites users are driven to by taking control of the customer journey from the first click. This will ensure they are always showing consumers the most relevant information for their needs, ultimately leading to an increase in conversions.
And finally, be as granular as possible. The importance of granular targeting of mobile consumers cannot be overlooked. This means not only geo-targeting through locally relevant offers, but also using the right technology to reach consumers with ads relevant to their language, device type, operating system, screen size and more.
The time is ripe for marketers to master the mobile world. Mobile clearly continues to develop as an essential growth channel within the marketing mix - with marketers running standalone mobile campaigns in addition to supplementing other channels such as paid search. Marketers just need to realise the vast difference in the time customers spend on mobile devices as opposed to viewing printed materials and adjust their mobile advertising spend accordingly.