Like the rest of the world, New Zealand is on a rapid path towards a multi-screen society.
With New Zealand’s smartphone penetration projected to reach 70% early next year, and with tablets outselling smartphones, mobile devices are becoming ever more ubiquitous.
The time spent viewing these ‘smart screens’ continues to balloon and globally it’s predicted they’ll be used to access over 25% of total internet traffic by the end of 2014.
Our devices are always on, always near and perceived as items we can’t live without, making them a powerful and engaging channel with consumers. A recent study showed today’s consumers check their smartphones 150 times per day for a wide variety of reasons.
Almost half of smartphone users are researching products while in store and using them to compare prices. Banks and publishers are finding that more of their customers and readers are accessing their services via mobile.
Yet many brands are still not appearing on these channels and screens. Why is this?
A 2012 Hipcricket mobile advertising survey found that 64% of smartphone owners had made a purchase after seeing a mobile ad, yet nearly 74% haven’t received mobile ads from their favourite brands.
As an advertising channel, mobile websites, apps, games and social networks continue to provide marketers with a unique set of challenges and opportunities.
To get and keep a smart screen user’s attention demands an optimised experience, so understanding what these consumers are seeking and how they use their different devices will be crucial for brands to win in this space.
Devices are as unique as the people that own them through the variety of applications they install, the content they consume and the problems they use their handsets to solve.
This can make it difficult for brands to identify and reach their customers, as there’s no one size fits all approach.
The challenge and opportunity for business is that mobile significantly disrupts the traditional path to purchase model
across most categories.
For example, 94% of consumers use online resources to inform their purchases and 40% use three or more channels during this process.
Mobile can influence at every level, from the pre-purchase research and evaluation, through to in-store price comparisons,
purchase, order tracking and post-purchase reviews, feedback and retention.
Understanding how you can use the channel to attract, convert and retain customers will help marketers reinvent their sales model and deliver new business opportunities in this rapidly evolving landscape.
Exciting solutions are already being explored by brands that understand this channel’s importance. Through premium
networks, advanced audience and contextual targeting is used alongside geolocation information to identify large groups
of highly defined consumers.
Interactive rich media and video then provide engaging brand experiences to influence and drive consumers towards
specific campaign goals.
New data driven ad formats can deliver highly contextually aware adverts to consumers that are personally tailored
with information like location, weather and products of interest.
Perhaps even more powerful is the fact that mobile can complete the loop on the customer experience, allowing them to
call your business directly from the ad or get directions to their closest store.
With innovative and highly targeted solutions like these it’s no wonder that mobile and tablet advertising see interaction and response rates that far outstrip traditional web.
Mobile is just getting started; as the technology and our understanding develop so too will the results we see. A recent Harvard Business Review article stated that “consumers no longer go shopping, they always are shopping” and I would also argue that mobile is accelerating the path to purchase process by arming consumers with a wide range of information on which they can base their decisions while on the go.
The time for brands to explore and embrace smart screen advertising is now. Being an early mover will provide you with
valuable insights and a competitive advantage, connecting your brand with consumers through their most valued channel.
Make sure it’s your brand they see next.
Rowan Spinks is the New Zealand sales director for mobile media marketing company Snakk Media.
Snakk Media will be livestreaming its AGM and panel on the future of smart screen marketing here from 4PM.