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The brave new world of mobile marketing

Thanks to the advances in mobile technology and societal changes, the world has become a more connected and accessible place. According to the International Telecommunication Union, mobile penetration has exceeded 100% in 97 economies worldwide. While more than 2.6 billion people worldwide still lack access to basic sanitation, there are almost 4 billion mobile cellular subscriptions in the developing world.1


Not only do mobile phones allow individuals to communicate with each other from almost anywhere in the world, but they now also constitute one of the main ways in which people are accessing information about their immediate environment and  the wider world around them, connecting with brands and organisations of all sorts. Mobile has brought about a change in consumer behaviour, prompting them to demand convenience and control and creating the expectation of information and services at their fingertips. Mobile is becoming the access point of choice.


The emergence of the mobile consumer and this new always on, accessible world has presented marketers with a golden opportunity to communicate and engage with their target audiences in a tailored, interactive and relevant manner which delivers real return on investment.  But despite an estimated 300 million smartphones being shipped and average smartphone data usage doubling last year, very few companies have a mobile marketing strategy. In fact, according to recent research by Google, less than 20 per cent of UK companies have a mobile optimised website.3


There is a huge variety of mobile marketing tools and techniques that marketers can utilise to connect and engage with target audience in an effective and measurable way, from messaging to mobile sites, applications, mobile search, m-commerce and m-CRM.  But what really delivers on the holy grail of consumer engagement where the mobile consumer is concerned, is the employment of ‘contextual relevance’. This involves specifically tailoring the marketing communication to an individual mobile consumer based on information like time, location, preferences and previous search history.  Contextual relevance is ideal for establishing a valuable dialogue with consumers based on real need and demand, providing them with relevant content and in many cases enabling them to find or purchase the sought after product or service instantaneously – with a  real impact on the bottom line. Moreover, since 95 per cent of searches on a smartphone have been found to be local4, contextual relevance can also help to drive footfall into businesses by offering compelling information with the knowledge that the consumer is nearby.


Now more than ever in this time of the cost-conscious and time-poor mobile consumer the mobile channel presents an opportunity that businesses cannot afford to miss. To explore how mobile has transformed marketing strategies in more detail, join the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) at its MMA Forum London on October 4th-5th where many of the world’s top marketers, including speakers from brands like BBC, Coca-Cola, Google, JetBlue Airways, La Redoute, Mahou-San Miguel and  Unilever will be sharing their thoughts and experiences on how brands need to communicate with their customers in a world dominated by mobile interaction.





3.  The research results were by Owen Charlebois, Global Manager, Advertising, Marketing and Media Research at Google.