Brands Struggle in Mobile

If 2012 was finally the year of mobile, 2013 is shaping up to be the year of mobile angst.

Despite mobile’s eye-popping growth numbers, the majority of brand CMOs aren’t happy with the results they’re seeing from their mobile efforts. In fact, according to a CMO Council study of 235 brand CMOs, only 14 percent are satisfied with the progress their companies are making in mobile. That’s a problem.

CMOs from brands like Anheuser-Busch, Coca-Cola, Eastman Kodak and JP Morgan Chase helped the CMO Council figure out why marketers aren’t happy with their mobile progress. It found that mobile, for all the hype, is still an odd duckling for most marketers.

Only 16 percent of brands have an actual mobile strategy in place, and only 18 percent know how mobile fits into their overall marketing strategy. With the majority of CMOs saying that their mobile strategy is really a work in progress, it’s no surprise that only 14 percent are happy with the results they are seeing.

CMO Council says that the problem isn’t a lack of understanding. It’s more like a lack of qualified talent. There’s a lack of resources at major brands. Mobile hasn’t won a seat at the table yet.

The problem is mobile should not be treated as just a tactic. It should be integrated into the multi-screen experience, meaning every campaign and program should have a mobile, desktop and tablet strategy. Launching an ad campaign on MTV.com? Run mobile ads on MTV’s mobile site. Make sure the landing page is optimized for both mobile and tablets. It’s about using every possible touch-point out there to reach consumers. Doing a mobile ad campaign within the MTV app isn’t going to bring about good results if you’re not doing this across multiple screens.

“What’s clear very early in this investigation is that the interest, demand, and hope for the mobile channel is as high as should be expected,” the report says. “However, the downsides, trepidation and frustration in successfully developing a strategy and executing beyond the current SMS or app campaign emerged.”