Mobile Marketing Goals: It Depends

More than 90 percent of companies using mobile advertising are doing so in order to increase brand awareness, according to new research conducted by Ovum on behalf of the Interactive Advertising Bureau.

However, beyond brand awareness, marketing goals diverge across different verticals. Increasing engagement with products and services was key for the retail vertical. But for the entertainment and media segment, support for specific promotions topped the list of goals. Because consumers tend to think of their mobile devices as an extension of themselves, it is not surprising that five of the seven verticals included in the research — financial services, retail, media and entertainment, hospitality and restaurants — indicate that customer relationship marketing is of primary importance. What is somewhat surprising is that for two of the verticals — travel and fast moving consumer goods — this goal is not important.

There is some evidence that the mobile marketing learning curve may be steeper than originally thought. Although the research reveals that more than half of marketers currently using mobile advertising are reasonably satisfied, more than a third reported themselves “reasonably dissatisfied.”

Even marketers making effective use of mobile advertising are not blind to stumbling blocks that have the potential to derail the forward motion that the platform has enjoyed. Among areas of concern, marketers identified a lack of standardized metrics, device OS fragmentation and lack of agency expertise as the most worrisome. When study respondents were asked about consumer privacy, most noted that measures needed to be taken in order to address concerns about privacy but were unable to suggest any specific courses of action.

Once again, research revealed that reports of the death of feature phones have been greatly exaggerated. Although smartphones routinely receive a lion’s share of mobile marketing attention, marketers understand that there is still a sizable population using phones with lower IQs. Almost half of all marketers said they rank this category of devices as high or medium-high priority. Interestingly the research showed that marketers expect feature-phone usage to increase, rather than decrease, over the next two years.


The research reveals that whether marketers identify their mobile strategies as experimental, ad hoc or fully integrated into overall media campaigns has very little bearing on how much they spend on the platform. Some marketers who view themselves as only testing out the mobile waters spent in excess of  $300,000 (the highest marker in the study) while other marketers who use mobile with regularity, either as a standalone or as a part of a larger campaign, spend less than $50,000 (the study’s lowest marker).

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