Mobile penetration is at an all-time high, and marketers are now quick to adapt their marketing strategies to fit these palm-sized screens. But simply getting mobile right is not nearly enough. Marketers need to ensure their marketing communication is consistent and effective across the gamut of channels available today.
Lorenzo Peracchione (pictured), e-commerce Director, SEA and ANZ, said at a recent Digital Marketing Asia conference organised by Marketing, that for him the 3Ds to mobile marketing revolve around data, design and distribution. Another key question, he said, marketers should be asking is how to ensure their marketing efforts are being perceived as valuable in the eyes of customers.
“Are these efforts being seen as supportive or intrusive? The important thing here is to be customer-centric and understand your customer journey. Think about how customers interact and communicate with you via mobile,” he said, adding that brands also need to think beyond mobile as customers jump from one platform to another on a constant, everyday basis.
The first area of focus, and perhaps the most important, is data. This is especially since much of this data is unique to mobile phones and cannot be collected in any other manner. This includes data such as location or context on where your customer might be active.
“The more data you get, the more you can implement a personalised form of marketing, such as omni-channel integration as well as predictive analytics,” Peracchione explained.
That being said, the more data you have, the more complex it becomes in managing that data, and ensuring it’s being put to good use in a way that is valuable for the customer. This is while translating returns for your company.
“Data is also a little bit like a goldmine. You know that gold is hidden somewhere, but you need to sweat it out, and dig, in order to find it. Sweating in this sense means being ready to invest a lot, both in terms of technology, infrastructure and also in the right people and talent.”
However, a common challenge is that finding talent that understands data is “extremely scarce today”, and also in high demand. As such, success requires a marketer to be able to transfer, collect and process a huge volume of data, on top of doing it quickly – sometimes in real-time.
“You need to be able to control the quality of your data, otherwise, you will get the problem of ‘crap in crap out’ [insights].”
On the flip side, developments in artificial intelligence and machine learning have helped improve things and bring it to a point which was previously thought of as unthinkable. This has allowed companies to exponentially increase the pace of experimentation, create hypotheses and strategies very quickly, while readjusting their strategies in a very agile manner.
The next D is design. Mobile marketing cannot just be a copy or a shrink of desktop collateral. Yet, many marketers today tend to take what they have for desktop or other forms of marketing materials and try to adapt it for mobile. This is a “very clear recipe for failure”, Peracchione said.
“Companies really need to start rethinking their entire approach to design or being mobile-first. Mobile is always, or in most of the cases, the first touch-point you will have with your new customer, so this [medium] is very important not just in terms of your ads or promotional communication, but also your entire UX design for your platform,” he explained.
Another important aspect related to design is video, which has seen a drastic increase in investment over the years. However, producing video is often not cheap, especially videos of high quality.
Brands also need to consider that formats popular with consumers such as Millennials are constantly changing. This includes formats which worked before such as how-to videos or highly educational ones which are no longer as relevant.
“Some of the platforms are good at paid reach such as Google’s YouTube or Facebook. But other platforms are better at engagement, especially organic engagement like Instagram. And those might be a better choice for you if you have a strong brand and not too much money to invest in video,” he added.
Last, the final D is distribution, which refers to the distribution channels a marketer is leveraging on to publish their content. According to Peracchione, different channels have very different cost structures and one needs to be aware of those in order to have a marketing strategy which ultimately translates to the right financial return for your company.
“Starting from performance marketing – Google Search and Facebook are at the cornerstone of every company’s marketing strategy. However, they need not be and should not be the only ones you consider when you develop your marketing mix,” he said.
Looking at quality metrics and not just at the number of installs you might be getting is also crucial. This will play into having good predictors of the long-term retention of a brand’s mobile app, he explained. The goal is to ensure customers come back frequently as much as possible.
“You might not be able to convert today or tomorrow, but as long as they keep coming back, you will be able to one day convert them if you structure your user journey correctly.”
Meanwhile, mobile CRM is also another important block of distribution and is particularly relevant because it allows marketers to target their most engaged audience in a very specific manner.
Marketing automation solutions today allows marketers to leverage user past browsing behaviour and user data to be able to target users in a very tailored and personalised way.