As we embark on yet another year, we no doubt will hear various industry experts claiming 2014 to be the ‘year of mobile’….for the 10th consecutive year or so.
That is not new news and you as a marketer probably want to know where Mobile Marketing is heading and what trends will unfold so as to let you better prepare for 2014.
So here you go! Our 3 Top Mobile Marketing Trends for 2014.
1) The emergence of MultiMedia Messaging as a marketing tool
For quite a few years, SMS has been the dominant medium for mobile marketing. Brands and retailers have built large mobile databases with which they can send their customers an SMS to alert them of an offer or other relevant news.
This will all start to change in 2014 as these same brands and retailers adopt MultiMedia Messaging (MMS) as their new preferred method of communication.
MMS is a picture or video sent via SMS. When you take a picture or video and send it to a friend through your text message platform on your device, you are sending an MMS.
Much the same way users are sending pictures and videos to friends instead of writing them an SMS, brands and retailers have now realized that a picture is worth a thousand words and will have a significantly bigger impact with their communications to their opted-in database.
The 136 (in Canada) and 160 (in US) character limits of sending an SMS are no longer a factor as marketers and brands can now send pictures and videos to further entice their customer base and still get the immediacy of SMS.
Remember, the open rates on SMS are typically around 98%. Adding pictures or videos to a communication medium with such high open rates offers a killer marketing tactic for brands.
2) Location-based Marketing
Although not a new concept, location-based marketing will really take shape in 2014.
Being able to target consumers with relevant information, products or offers is making mobile marketing not more intrusive, which was previously the theory, but rather more relevant and it changes the way marketing happens as a whole.
One thing to keep in mind is that location-based marketing takes on many forms.
Ensuring you have mobile search engine optimization for your brand so a consumer can quickly find your location, get directions to your store or office and know how long it will take to get there is one example of location-based marketing.
Geo-targeted promotions and notifications will be given prominence in the marketing mix as companies start to see the benefits of customer targeting based on location. This may take the form of Bluetooth enablers, such as Apple’s new iBeacon, or geo-fencing a physical location to send out an SMS to an opted-in database.
In-store location-based marketing will also start to gain more traction in 2014, by adding features such as ‘find in store’. For example, a consumer in a store could specify what product she is looking for using a retailer’s mobile platform; then the app pinpoints the location of that product in the store.”
3) Increased Personalization
This is a trend we saw in 2013 and will continue through 2014. Consumers are heavily researching products via mobile and therefore brands and retailers need to cater to their individual wants and needs to quickly convert them into buyers.
For example, if a consumer searches for rain jackets in a retailer’s mobile app, then they should offer coupons or suggestions for related items.
A big thorn in a retailer’s side these days is ‘showrooming’ and ‘showrooming’, improving he personalization to your customers is a great way to combat it.
Location-based marketing will also help with personalization. For example, a shopper steps into a grocery store and their list turns into an interactive map that guides him through the store to relevant items and personalized deals.
Brands will start to track a consumers behaviour and devices used so that not only will the offers and suggestions provided be in line with their individual tastes but also delivered in a format-friendly way for their specific device.
The biggest driving factor for personalization? In a recent study by Vibes, 89% of shoppers indicated they wanted more personalized offers but only 18% believe that brands and retailers are delivering them.
Consumers are looking for personalization from their preferred retailers but not many feel they are getting that type of services and brands and retailers will tackle this issue in 2014.