It doesn’t matter who you are or who you serve. Users have more commerce, finance and personal wellness options than ever before. And the tide of long tail offerings shows no signs of quelling.
Even amidst the increasing number of offerings, the democratization of media has made it easier for consumers to find exactly what they seek.
Entrepreneurs and established businesses are asking the same thing. So, what does this mean? The answer — brands must work ever harder and more strategically to stand out in the fray.
Welcome to the “Age of the Consumer”
Forrester has dubbed modern times the “Age of the Consumer.” Consumers today don’t just seek tangible goods. They seek knowledge. Entertainment. And social inclusion. All things brands can provide either through their products or the loyal communities surrounding them.
While it’s true more competition exists, consumers are more accessible than they ever have been. According to Forrester, consumers pick up their mobile devices between 150-200 times per day. That amounts to a total of 30 BILLION mobile moments every 24 hours. Yet only 14% of companies today are leveraging mobile (yes, 14%) to improve their customer experience. According to Forrester, consumers pick up their mobile devices between 150-200 times per day. That amounts to a total of 30 BILLION mobile moments every 24 hours. The problem? Only 14% of companies today are leveraging mobile (yes, 14%) to improve their customer experience. The majority of brands are advertising and operating far behind the curve. Consumers are voluntarily checking Instagram, reading articles on Medium and posting longform content on the LinkedIn Pulse platform. Brands who want to reach consumers must be present and active where they work and play.
Consolidation of Owners Winning “Mobile Moments”
Over the past two years, the time that users spend in apps has increased over 63%. Despite the frequency with which users access mobile technology, 84% spend the majority of their time in five or fewer apps. Thus, connecting with active users and gaining mindshare is difficult, though not unattainable.
Breaking it down, the challenges to reach today’s consumers are:
- Bridging the old and new
- Evolving marketing to match consumer use habits
The following mobile marketing strategies promise to help brands engage with today’s hungry digital consumers more effectively.
1. Embrace Multi-Touch Mobile Marketing Strategies
To break through the noise, brands need multi-touch mobile marketing strategies. After MobCon, the MentorMate founded and hosted mobile strategy and technology conference, we surveyed attendees. Over half classified the act of engaging with consumers several times during their movement through the sales cycle as “very important.”
Why? Consumer attention spans are limited. Repetition is key to make an impact in a crowded landscape. The following statistics create a snapshot of the cut-throat climate mobile marketers operate within. Consumers want content, and they want it quickly. If one brand or product doesn’t deliver, they know the next one will.
- 10 — the number of seconds it takes a user to decide if they will stay on your web page
- 40% — of visitors will abandon a web page if it takes more than 3 seconds to load
- 8 seconds — the average attention span of an internet user
2. Personalize the User Experience
With more brands and businesses competing for business than consumers can mentally metabolize, consumers can afford to be picky. To secure their attention today, brands must demonstrate they truly “know” their audience, according to MobCon 2015 keynote speaker Susan Panico, Vice President of Sales Marketing for Pandora.
The reward? A slice of the elusive consumer attention span. Use these tactics to personalize the mobile consumer experience:
Data-enabled insights. Show users you understand their desires and challenges by creating campaigns and functionality derived from user insights. Identify trends through data and build your campaign around it. Intuition is the enemy of the wise in today’s data-driven marketing climate.
Predictive analytics. One accessible example of the power of predictive analytics is personalized retail experiences. With the proper tracking in place, brands can recommend related products when consumers search for or buy a specific item.
Beacons. By sending users proximity-based offers based on past viewing or purchasing behavior, brands can engage users at the point of sale increasing the likelihood of action when it counts.
We surveyed MobCon onsite attendees following our 2015 conference. Here is how they classified the biggest user experience-related opportunities for businesses.
3. Use the Power of Multi-Media to Deliver Consumer Communications
Users today are living in the middle of a media renaissance.
Sound. It’s being incorporated into the sales process in increasingly innovative ways through voice activation and recognition. It’s emotive and powerful. Pandora surveyed users and found 60% say music makes them feel closer to their culture than religion, language or tradition. Beyond its power as a storytelling agent, sound is screen agnostic and can be consumed as listeners multi-task.
Sight. Video on the small screen offers brands new ways to engage consumers. Its usage on Facebook, Bing or YouTube cannibalizes the former “top-dog” of traditional media bringing its potential to the mobile sphere.
4. Test Distribution Strategies to Reach Your Target Audiences
Finding the right channel to use in reaching your target audience is as important as the content (blogs, social ads or other content) you’re promoting. Try reaching out to contacts with a highly diverse mobile marketing strategy at first — one that includes higher than normal spend on paid social promotion and increased emails sends to your contact list supplemented by other sends to segments targeted by interest area. Repost any blog content on Medium and as LinkedIn Pulse posts. Promote via highly targeted lists on social media. (Spoiler: If you have a list of emails for contacts, Facebook allows you to upload that list of emails and use it to target those contacts with ads and promoted posts.) Then, watch performance over 1-2 months.
The key to success? Setting up and tracking KPIs (key performance indicators). If your main game is lead/contact acquisition and nurturing, monitor which channel(s) bring in the most new contacts or best engage existing contacts. Leverage those channels in subsequent promotion efforts.
5. Share the Burden of Marketing Budget Between All Involved Departments
Last year it was reported 35% of consumers make purchases on their mobile devices. So, make an enterprise-wide commitment to mobile. Ownership for the mobile function of a business varies greatly between Marketing, IT or even Sales. Regardless of where the responsibility “lives,” it’s critical department stakeholders bring budget to the table since the impact of (or lack thereof) mobile engagement will be felt organizationally.
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