THE FACTS ARE IMPRESSIVE: nine in 10 U.S. adults now own a mobile phone, and sales
of smartphones have finally outstripped those of standard cell phones with PDA functions.
Offering the power and functionality of a typical laptop, the smartphone is the ultimate
productivity and entertainment tool — across every age group and demographic category.
This is one of those rare cases in which the reality matches the hype. Indeed, smartphones have finally reached scale. Thanks to an always-on connection, these devices are
increasingly informing decisions at every point of the purchase funnel, or what we call the
“consumer journey.” People now spend about half their time away from home and the
office. And no matter where they are, they want on-the-spot information. Google reported a
500 percent increase in mobile search over the past two years. That trend will only continue
as innovative new technologies like Voice Search make the search process even easier.
For brands, having a presence in the fastest-growing marketing space ever is more than
an opportunity — it’s a requirement. To shortchange the mobile space would be akin to
ignoring consumers in the very place they live their lives. So how does a brand make an
impact in this game-changing environment? Here are three steps to consider.
1. Be found
Every brand needs a mobile site. True, the
mobile web and the “real” web are fast
converging, but we’re not quite there yet.
Right now, studies show that less than
20 percent of companies have a site
optimized for mobile, so building one
represents a great opportunity for you to
get a leg up on the competition.
If you don’t have such a foundation in
place, your customers will likely leave you
for a brand that does. A joint study by
GoMez and Equation Research bears this
out: about 60 percent of mobile web users
are unlikely to return to a website they
had trouble accessing, and 40 percent
said they’d likely visit a competitor’s
mobile website instead. That’s probably
the same reaction you would have.
Consumers aren’t being calculating —
they’re just living their lives.
At Digitas, we view the consumer
journey to purchase in its entirety. That
helps us identify the best opportunities to
build brand awareness, provide targeted
information, and make a sale. But only
consumers know what they really want —
and when they want it. When that moment
occurs, your brand must be ready to
engage with timely, relevant information.
Your brand must be found.
2. Be there
Once you’re in the mobile space, you
have to actively participate in the
communities consumers inhabit. In
some ways, just “showing up” and doing
nothing is worse than not showing up
at all. Nobody likes the neighbor who
occasionally attends the block party, or
says hello only when he’s peddling his
kid’s Girl Scout cookies.
3. Be relevant
The only thing that separates marketing
from opinion is data. Without data, your
marketing is nothing more than what you
think, hope, or say is true. It’s optimism
How do you know what information will
be relevant to consumers? To send the
right data out, you have to process the data
coming in. About 300 people concentrate
on data and analytics at Digitas. We know
that when you understand data, you can
more accurately time the delivery of
content to help people make better
decisions — and that accelerates the trip
through the purchase funnel.
Being relevant is not just what you say,
but how you say it. With mobile driving
an explosion in the availability of data, we
are entering an age of unprecedented
creativity. We are seeing an astonishing
number of new creative technologies that
allow us to change the very definition
and nature of an interaction, such as the
sharing of real-time webcam photos in
banner ads. Better insights and better
technology are defining the path of
marketing innovation in the mobile space.
The consumer experience is evolving,
and with it, the opportunity for brands to
be relevant in the consumer journey.
To be there in the right moment with
the right information — to be a part of the
conversation at the peak opportunity —
you need data.
Matters to Everybody
To find your footing in the mobile space, you
can’t simply think of it as a technical matter
or just another brick in the marketing wall.
CEOs and CMOs care about mobile, but it
matters most to a couple looking for a great
movie to see on Friday night, a mom looking
for a kid-friendly restaurant after football
practice, or a friend looking to pick up a
bottle of cabernet on the way over for
dinner. It goes on and on. Everyone cares.
And the brands that meet consumers’
needs in the moment are the ones that will
be found, be there, and be relevant. It’s a
simple, powerful formula. It’s the founda-
tion of mobile marketing. And it’s the
key to success. ■
ANA Thought Leadership Series October 2011 | 9