Mobile marketing trends for 2016
Mobile will continue to revolutionize shopper marketing promotions
Mobile continues to play an under-appreciated role as a bridge between offline and online, particularly when it comes to retail. Brands are increasingly leveraging mobile in promotions, both in validating purchase through bridging solutions such as receipt processing and in providing incentives via digital content, electronic gift cards and prepaid credit cards. In addition to driving sales, the data generated by these shopper marketing promotions can be used to better understand actual shopping purchase patterns and real-world user behavior.
Mobile commerce moves beyond window shopping
Not so long ago, mobile’s role in commerce was largely to influence shopping: read product reviews, check pricing and receive coupons and offers. That is clearly not true any longer. From Instagram’s “Shop Now” to Pinterest’s “Buyable Pins,” many of today’s leading social media have added direct e-commerce capabilities to their platforms. Since most of social is mobile anyway, expect that to have a meaningful effect on mobile commerce.
Mobile moves beyond the phone
Mobile no longer means just your phone or tablet, but increasingly your watch, your car, even your fashion accessories and the clothes you wear. The rise of wearables is going to have a profound effect on mobile marketing overall. Smart watches will likely drive wearable adoption, and over the next few years, most watch manufacturers will be incorporating elements of wearable into their phones, dramatically expanding the overall market. Wearable’s, by their very nature, are more intimate and provide deeper data about consumers. Marketers will need to work hard to tease out the opportunity for each of the different device types, and each one will have its own unique format and requirements.
Planet of the apps
Consumers spent more time inside mobile applications than watching television in 2015. Expect brands to launch even more apps, and use their apps as the go-to channel to build both community and loyalty, to drive engagement and purchase, and provide consumer-related services.
Mobile video comes of age
As mobile video grows, so does mobile video advertising. Google recently announced that it will incorporate video ads in search results, which will be a significant driver in making mobile video ads the de facto advertising standard on the medium. This trend is reinforced by the fact that advertisers are anyway creating mobile-specific video ads of under-15 second duration to run on native social media apps such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Vine and SnapChat.
The Internet of me
As marketers collect more data about individuals from connected devices and across their purchase habits, consumers themselves are increasingly coming to expect highly customized and personalized interactions with brands, particularly on the devices they keep in their pockets. Expect to see large-scale adoption of automation tools not just by large and mid-size businesses, but increasingly by smaller businesses, too.
Chat is the new social
WeChat in China was once a simple messaging app, but has now become a full-fledged marketing, commerce and payment platform. Users are able to connect with brands, request and reserve services, and buy and pay for goods, all through the same app. Both Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp are expected to cross more than 1 billion users in 2016. Although Facebook has been coy about opening up those services to brands for marketing opportunities, expect that to change in 2016.