In a Pew Research Center study, 90% of American adults have a cell phone. For marketers, this is great news. We all know about, and continue to see the rise in mobile use for everything from shopping, to making restaurant or travel reservations, to communicating with one’s doctor, as well as myriad other uses.
While consumers’ mobile phone usage will be more critical to marketers, there are challenges facing mobile marketing.
In a recent post, I mentioned the growing use of mobile phones in 2015 and what it means for marketing, especially with the increasing size of the screens on mobile phones: “With smartphones’ screens becoming wider and larger, and many users even using their devices for entertainment purposes, marketers will be wise spend on mobile, or phablets, as they are called. According to the NDP Group Connected Intelligence Device Marketplace Report, smartphones with screens of 4.7 inches and larger account for more than a quarter of mobile device sales.”
McKinsey Quarterly, in an article about “on-demand” marketing, says that “marketing is headed toward being on demand—not just always “on,” but also always relevant, responsive to the consumer’s desire for marketing that cuts through the noise with pinpoint delivery.”
Brands will face challenges such as lack of personalization, which is what will attract consumers, who desire a relationship in which they also have some control. This fact is more so when it comes to Millennials. Accenture’s recent report shows that “Many seek personalized, targeted promotions and discounts as the price for their loyalty.” As well, “95 percent or more of Millennials say they want their brands to court them actively, and coupons sent via email or mailed to their homes currently (or will in the future) have the most influence on them. ” Yet, as shows, sending coupons and similar materials via cell phones is not welcomed, and see as clutter, while texts are turn-off.
In this increasingly digital age, consumers have volunteered information and know that their shopping habits are tracked. Many see the benefits in this, in that brands will offer them products they may be interested in. However, consumers will still want to know and feel that they have not lost control.
Another challenge is too much familiarity. Consumers will be turned off if consumers feel that brands are contacting them too much. Beware of the truth familiarity breeds contempt.
Mobile customers are on the move, and they may move on if they feel the relationship isn’t working.