2014: The Year of Mobile
Seeing how the mobile explosion will affect your marketing campaign and your business is not simply a matter of building a mobile-friendly website. Rather, it is a question of understanding how this shift towards mobile communications ultimately affects every corner of business, marketing and consumption. Marshall McLuhan once suggested that “the medium is the message,” that the characteristics of the medium used are just as important as the content delivered by the media. When taking the characteristics of mobile devices—cell phones, tablets and the like—into consideration, we are faced with questions of “who?” “how?” and “where?”
Imagine a young twenty-something year old commuting to work in the morning. She reads her e-mail while waiting for a coffee at Starbucks, which prompts her to click on a link indicating a sale for winter coats. Her coffee comes; she stuffs her cell phone in her pocket and heads to work. During her lunch break, she logs on to her e-mail on her desktop computer where she then revisits the winter coat sale. She clicks around, maybe even “favorites” a few items and logs off. Later that night she logs back onto the site on her tablet, shares the link with her friend for approval and purchases a winter coat.
Thanks to mobile-optimized websites and responsive design, consumers are able to enjoy the convenience of their mobile devices without feeling hindered. To the extent that an integrated marketing campaign aims to be consistent across all platforms, a mobile strategy as part of this plan should without a doubt be considered. Both responsive design and mobile applications are ways to boost e-commerce for small businesses by allowing consumers to move seamlessly between devices and match and meet conversion goals.
The growth of mobile users also has significant implications for search engines and local search results. While on the go, the likelihood that a search inquiry for a local service or business will be on a smart phone or a tablet is high. Local businesses, small or not, looking for ways to incorporate an SEO strategy or a pay-per-click campaign into their marketing plan should undoubtedly infuse their ads with local name-dropping and data.
Unlike my father, who refers to Internet Explorer as the “internet folder” on his “screensaver”, Millennials—the generation of people born between the 1980s and early 2000s and on the verge of ruling the world—use mobiles to do more than search. For Millennials, mobile platforms are a source of social interaction, a way to engage brands and boost sales.
The growing popularity of mobile applications such as SnapChat and Instagram imply that image-based mobile experiences are thriving. Pay attention to the way this consumer demographic behaves, for it will provide a light into the way images, words and products are shared, perceived and used.
Lastly, less is more.
“Excuse me?” you must be thinking, “they’re talking Integrated marketing plans, responsive designs, interactive mobile applications, local search content and mobile optimized and trying to tell me that less is more?”
We sure are. Life is chaotic – why clutter it any more with flashy design and hard-to-use and inconsistent features? Consumers are much more likely to return to a website, blog or even a store when the experience was positive. Distracting visuals and over-wordy copy has no place on a mobile site and is more likely to leave a consumer frustrated. Mobile optimization should offer easy to read and even easier to use experience that is only enhanced by a simple design.
Your mobile optimization speaks about your brand – if you don’t provide mobile access/support/optimization, what does it say about your brand? If you are interested in mobile marketing and optimization services, contact Strategis today!