“I couldn’t live without my cell phone.” How many times have you heard someone say that? I have heard it a lot, and I’m guessing that you have too. Oddly, there is a name for the fear of living without your phone and it’s called, nomophobia, which literally stands for no-mobile phobia (you can read more about that here)
Almost ten years ago when I got my first cell phone, the LG VX8300 V-Cast, I would’ve never guessed that a mobile device would become such a huge part of my life.
Now I use my phone for everything, from an alarm clock to mobile banking. It holds all of my 2,400+ pictures (don’t worry, they’re all backed up), phone numbers that I don’t have memorized, and it serves as entertainment when I am bored (like when it’s 2 a.m. and for some reason I just can’t stop scrolling through my Facebook feed). Seriously though, my phone holds so much information about me that it probably knows me better than most people reading this blog.
From a marketing standpoint, mobile devices are the holy grail for gathering data about consumers, reaching target audiences and forging relationships. I mean why not target people through the device that they literally take and use everywhere.
So since we all (or at least most of us) have smartphones, let’s talk about how much time we spend on them. This article, by DigitalTrends.com says that we spend on average 4.7 hours PER DAY on our phones, that is roughly one-third of our time (let that sink in). Here are more interesting stats about mobile usage;
- 80% of internet users have smartphones
- 48% of consumers start mobile research with a search engine
- 26% of consumers start mobile research from a branded app
- App usage accounts for 89% of mobile media time, while 11% is spent on mobile websites
- 79% of people use their smartphones to read emails
- Over 50% of smartphone users grab their phone immediately after waking up (guilty as charged)
- 68% of companies have integrated mobile marketing into their overall marketing strategy
- By 2019, mobile advertising will represent 72% of all U.S. digital ad spending
While doing research for this blog I came across this real-time report by Smart Insights. It reports mobile usage and revenue generated from mobile purchases in real-time, you also have the option to look at the data for the past 1-hour, 1-day or 1-month (hint: to see the data in real-time hold ctrl and click on the 1-day, 1-week, or 1-month text link).
So what does this mean for the future of marketing? Here are 3 trends in mobile marketing to watch;
1. Mobile Video
Mobile videos are a great way to add visual elements to your content and keep your consumers engaged. Video ads are great at grabbing the viewers attention which increases brand awareness. Additionally the use of sound in video ads increases the overall memorability of it and allows your marketing message to be communicated even if the user its paying full attention to the video. Another advantage of mobile video is that is it very user friendly. As consumers, we have been watching videos online for a long time, so pressing the “play” button comes very natural to us. Just think about when you are on Facebook, I don’t know about you but I stop and watch almost every video that I pass on my feed. It tends to be something that I do without having consciously having to think about it, it’s kind of like my mind associates videos with something that I either going to be 1.) funny, 2.) interesting, or 3.) adorable. According to study done by Ooyala, 46% of all videos consumed in Q4 2015 were on mobile devices. If that isn’t enough proof to convince you that this trend is on the rise, maybe the fact that smartphone video consumption grew 170% between 2013 and 2015 will.
I currently have 73 apps on my iPhone, they range from weather apps, to social media apps, to retail apps. These apps increase my experience dealing with the task of checking the weather, connecting with people online, or purchasing a product. Take the REI app for example, the app is linked with my REI account which is linked with my member number, so anytime I make a purchase through the app I don’t have to worry about getting reward points or using member only discounts because its already synced with my account. REI benefits from me having the app because it allows them to collect an abundance of data about me through my phone and my behavior on the app. This allows them to target me with advertisements that are tailored to what I am interested in. Apps allow businesses to insert themselves further into their consumers lives while also offering the consumer some functional benefit. There’s no question that consumers are spending time on apps, mobile app usage grew 58% from 2014 to 2015 and only continues to increase.
3. Push Notifications (location-based targeting)
Push notifications allow brands to stay in contact with its consumers buying sending them app updates, promotions or letting them know about in-store events. Let’s go back to the REI example. I don’t know if this happens to anyone else, but whenever I get within a certain radius of an REI store a notification pops up on my phone that tells me that I am close to a REI location. I think its pretty cool and it actually makes me want to stop by the store and browse their products. So let’s get into the statistics; 52% of smartphones user have push notification enabled, 54% of user who click on a push notification convert, and app abandonment drops 10% when the users are integrated with push notifications. Even though push notifications can increase engagement, they can be extremely annoying to some users. Personally, I have the notifications disabled for about half of my apps. The apps that I do have notification turned on for are most likely to be related to; social networking, shopping, and personal stuff (my banking app and my medical app).