By Chris Lee
Mobile ad spend is predicted to rise in 2014 across sectors, but where will the money go and what should marketers be doing to make sure they get best value from their mobile marketing this year? Continuing our look at key mobile developments in 2014, NMK caught up with three industry experts to get their thoughts on trends for 2014.
Taking a cross-channel view
For Tresilian Segal, Head of Marketing Northern Europe, Adobe Marketing Cloud, mobile will continue to be more closely integrated into cross-channel marketing strategies.
“Consumers expect an enjoyable experience when they interact with brands on mobile, whether that’s in a browser or on an app,” said Segal. “This means brands must view mobile as an intrinsic part of the overall marketing mix (social, email, search, etc.) and ensure that they can deliver a positive experience via mobile.”
Segal believes businesses should ask themselves three questions when devising a mobile strategy:
- How do my customers and prospective customers use mobile?
- How does mobile fit into my business strategy?
- Do we have the infrastructure in place to deliver on a mobile strategy?
Mobile advertising in 2014
Henric Ehrenblad of mobile ad network Widespace believes that during 2014 mobile advertising will come of age, especially in the UK.
“It has to in order to keep up with mobile user behaviours, this is a natural shift,” he told NMK. “Everyone does everything on the smartphone or tablet. We have short attention spans, we are bored and we are addicted! This drives behaviour and in turn it drives how brands must engage with their audiences.”
Brands will discover the effectiveness of mobile formats and audiences, Ehrenblad argues.
“With new mobile-specific ad formats driving development, brand engagement takes centre stage. The brand itself is key in retaining attention, remember we have a shorter attention span than goldfish at this point, and on average spend 2.7 hours per day socialising/sharing on mobile devices,” he added.
Ehrenblad believes that formats will evolve and engagement becomes a key word. It is not about the click, it is about awareness and retention, which are not measured using an outdated model built for desktop.
“Look at the bigger picture, engagement is so much more than just tapping and looking – it’s a full sensory experience and as such how we measure that engagement will be forced to update,” he said. “Mobile advertising will need to touch all senses of the human brain, not just the eyes. We are already seeing cross media becoming more and more relevant and it will continue to grow in importance. But add in formats that allow you to interact with the brand campaigns; speaking, listening and touching – now you have a bigger and better engagement opportunity.”
New technologies and new creative formats will spur this development, Ehrenblad says. Additions to radio and TV formats through mobile will allow for richer experiences and more effective brand advocacy and relevance. Cross device streaming and creative syncing will drive additional conversations in mobile, force the market to step up technically and move away from the adapted or piecemeal strategies to a focus on how to truly take advantage of mobile.
Look out for 4G in 2014
Irfon Watkins, the CEO and founder of UK advertising startup Coull, believes 2014 is set to be the year of 4G. Widespread roll-out of the high-speed mobile Internet service by multiple operators will bring ultrafast data downloads to the masses, he argues.
“Speeds of up to 300Mbps are already being trialled in some parts of London, allowing for the download of a Blu-ray video in seconds,” Watkins told NMK. “4G will revolutionise consumer access to, and consumption of, online video, heralding in the age of instant and consigning the much-maligned buffering circles to a thing of the past.”
Online video will become an even more important medium for both advertisers and publishers alike, leading to a renewed focus on quality content, rather than quantity, Watkins concluded.