Six Smart Steps to Better Mobile Marketing

Inplace #2

ADOTAS — It’s vital for businesses to reach potential customers on their mobile devices. A new study conducted by Magid shows consumers spend an average of 14 hours a week on mobile devices — or more than half a day. Consumers that use mobile devices have said they’re receptive to the right advertising with the right approach, as a recent Forrester study (commissioned by Tapjoy) found that nearly 50% of consumers want to see ads relevant to their personal interests or location.

However, many businesses haven’t figured out that approach on mobile quite yet, where antiquated practices are the norm. According to the same Forrester study, not only are most mobile ads irrelevant, but they’re also interruptive. Our own experience confirms that to be true: Banner ads are usually too small to catch a consumer’s attention, while pop-up ads are more aggravating than helpful.

At Tapjoy, we offer an innovative model that offers consumers the option to engage with the advertising most relevant to them, while at the same time, respecting the relationship with the consumer and offering them incentives for their time and engagement. We believe the same principals that propel our model hold true for many areas of mobile marketing. Here are six “Rs” to keep in mind as you shape your mobile marketing plan.

  1. Respect the device: Each mobile device is used differently. Tablets are better for media like reading books, watching HD video and playing games. Smartphones are more portable and a better option for tasks like organizing data and contacts or listening to music during a run. Given this context, marketers and advertisers need to think about how each customer will receive advertising on their devices. It’s also critical to understand that a mobile device offers a completely different experience than a desktop browser. When creating a campaign or content for mobile, keep in mind how users will access it and how it will look on each device, who you want to reach and what you are trying to accomplish.
  2. Relationship with user: Although consumers are spending huge amounts of time on their mobile devices, not all of that time is appropriate for marketing to intrude. Obviously, trying to reach consumers while they are talking on the phone or texting is especially disruptive. But even pop-up or display ads are frequently cited as disruptive and annoying. A better option is building a relationship with consumers so they receive only advertising they want or agree to view. For example, Tapjoy features a Marketplace where users can select which ads they want to view rather than being forced to watch a pre-selected ad. Brands like GMC have seen recall and engagement increase when allowing users to choose to watch and engage with their advertising. The payoff is even better when customers are rewarded for engaging with advertising.
  3. Real time: Marketers can now communicate with consumers immediately. Focus groups examining ads are a thing of the past; social media mobile devices allow businesses to determine if something is working almost immediately. One of the biggest benefits to mobile is agility; new strategies can be tested without draining marketing budgets. Unlike billboards or TV ads, where big budgets are invested up front and results measured later, mobile campaigns can be implemented, tested and refined in real time. Mobile offers quick return on results. Try new and different approaches until you find the sweet spot for brand objectives and don’t be afraid to change and incorporate based on what users are telling you.
  4. Resourcefulness: Mobile marketing isn’t just about being creative. It’s also about user value and engagement. Unlike TV ads that thrive on shock value alone (anyone remember all the crazy ads from the days?) mobile devices are used for more than just entertainment. Mobile ads need to offer something of value beyond a creative concept, a reason for customers to care about a company. Many brands have partnered with companies such as Tapjoy that combine creative ads with in-app currency and incentives that customers can use for things like gaming apps.  This encourages customers to engage with brands.
  5. Real results: A recent study by ComScore showed that three in 10 mobile display ads are never seen. One of the biggest advantages to mobile is that marketers can demand accountability. Unlike traditional metrics that measure only an estimated number of viewers (such as CPM), advertising platforms like ours allows advertisers to pay based on performance, using cost-per-engagement or cost-per-view measurements. This offers true insight into actual return on investment and campaign impact. Data is king on mobile, so be sure to measure results on all of your campaigns, and stick with what works (and ditch what doesn’t).
  6. Relax: Don’t expect things to change immediately (although it’s certainly possible that they will). Take a deep breath and get creative about integrating your brand into mobile advertising. With the surge of mobile activity and crunch of new devices, many companies are starting to act before they think. However, the biggest mistake marketers can make – aside from avoiding mobile – is losing brand identity. While getting in early is a huge advantage, the key to longevity and success is developing ad content that best uses mobile while retaining your identity and core messages.

There are definitely hurdles and obstacles to changing, but mobile offers opportunity and value to marketers in return. By remembering these “six Rs” mobile marketers can continue to build their brand in the mobile space while respecting the people who matter most: customers.