Mobile First! How to Hit the Ground Running in 2015

If you’re still waiting in the mobile marketing wings, while your competitors take center stage with mobile ad marketing, let’s make 2015 the year for your mobile debut. Let’s make this the year that you not only integrate mobile into your mix but that you lead your plan with it. Sector by sector, brands are increasingly adopting a mobile-first strategy. There are reasons for this growing comfort among your peers. It’s a great time for you to jump into it, yourself: here’s why and here’s how.

Why Now, Why Mobile-First?

Over approximately the past five years, we’ve seen programmatic media inventory and options — data analytics, audience modeling and targeting, campaign management systems — mature far beyond expectations. Why? Because programmatic mobile tech is at its core, replete with rich data sets, sophisticated audience tools, and systems to confidently implement and scale all efforts in this arena. What’s more, if inclined to lead with mobile, you’re not starting from scratch. Many have been this way before, so you can benefit from a treasure trove of their collective learning.

Of course, in leading with mobile, you acknowledge the role of connected devices in the day and the life of the consumer. As a recent IDG case study shows, 80 percent of users employ their tablet to make purchases. Sixty-nine percent use their smartphone. Clearly, savvy marketers should not ignore mobile. They can use this platform and its powerful place in the consumer’s day to drive to other platforms along the path. And while mobile may not be appropriate for all conversions or purchases, a well-developed mobile UI and experience certainly have proven their ability to drive consumers to larger screens or even into stores to execute. This is important! The same IDG study referenced above found that 53 percent say that a bad mobile experience makes them less likely to buy from a brand.

How Do I Engage in 2015?

To hit the ground running, you’ll need to have a few things in place, and a plan of action to sort out the rest. You can start with what you already know: your best customer. Beyond their demographics, what have you learned through your other media about their behaviors, their triggers, their lifestyles? Where might mobile fit into their lives, morning, noon, and night?

You’ll need to know all this, because, next, you’ll need:

Strong audience models: You’ll need to identify a solution that can provide strong support for mobile data analytic so you can identify, target, and reach your best audiences.

A flexible approach: Make sure you are well armed, team by team, to address your allocation, creative, and messaging. Because you can personalize and localize your campaigns, you should consider a road map for what you’ll evaluate and adjust and what you will not.

Partners who can help you evaluate and achieve your objectives: If this is new for you, the evaluation piece is key. We all appreciate partners who validate our vision and our objectives. But, don’t ignore their experience! You want partners who will work with you to achieve your goals but also tap into industry institutional knowledge to make sure your plan is sound and aligns with achievable objectives.

A recent study shows that more than 50 percent of U.S. citizens will use smartphones by the end of 2015 and the trend is likely to continue. Computing is not just going mobile; it’s already well on its way. Marketers who wait in the mobile wings will miss their chance at the spotlight, but the bold marketers who proudly take center stage will be the ones to shine.

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