By Anne Jarry, Marketing Director at Selligent Marketing Cloud
Mobile devices have become the Swiss Army Knives in our pockets, providing access to a vast array of channels. These range from email to SMS and push messages, to websites and apps, all the way to good old phone calls.
And mobile usage is only going to increase with the rollout of the 5G network – a recent report from Juniper Research revealed the amount of international 5G roaming mobile users is expected to grow 3300% over the next four years. From a digital marketing perspective, now is the time to get ahead and place mobile devices at the center of omnichannel customer journeys.
The new role of mobile
The rise of mobile commerce, social platforms, and a slew of app-connected services such as food delivery and transportation, means that consumers are connected to their smartphones more than ever before. Experts were already predicting a steady rise in all these numbers and then the pandemic hit and rendered any previous estimates obsolete. As consumers across the world isolated at home and avoided trips into the outside world, the balance between mobile and desktop touchpoints became disrupted. But here’s the important news: Marketers need to maintain their focus on mobile channels, now more than ever, to maximise consumer engagement on this critical channel.That’s because as a direct result of the crisis, mobile’s importance has grown exponentially.
A year on from the start of the pandemic, it may not come as a surprise that the number one device on which 45% of internet users reported spending more time was the smartphone. According to research by eMarketer, users will now spend three hours and six minutes per day on their smartphone; 23 minutes more than predicted before the crisis – and over 40 minutes more than two years previous.
To help digital marketers ride the mobile wave, here are five digital marketing strategies that will have consumers swiping their screens for more:
- Align your data architecture for a complete picture.
Laser-focus your mobile reach by implementing data from consumer profiles. Drawing on sets such as purchase history, personal preferences, and current location allows marketers to serve experiences with one-to-one personalisation. For maximum impact, choose a marketing cloud platform blending CDP capabilities with journey design and execution, like Selligent Marketing Cloud, as the one-stop solution to building segmented campaigns that place the individual customer at the center. This will tighten your tech stack beyond just mobile and help provide positive digital customer experiences across all channels, which 80% of IT professionals consider today’s biggest challenge.
- Enlist AI capabilities to transform customer data into targeted engagement.
The shift to mobile unlocks a wealth of consumer intelligence, including preference data blended with real-time behavior. Making sense of this data, marketing-specific AI-engines analyse these individual data points. This allows for automated and powerful audience segmentation and personal relevance down to the individual consumer.
- Orchestrate seamless online and offline experiences.
As consumers initiate transactions at home and visit physical storefronts to complete the process, companies need to create seamless experiences with an omnichannel perspective. In the parlance of marketing, it’s all about removing friction and offering convenience. This is where mobile channels punch well above their weight class, as they remove friction from logins, payments, check-outs, order management, and other useful features. This directly translates into better user experiences, and increased sales. For proof, many UK supermarkets reported to have doubled the number of home delivery slots, including click and collect, within a mere six weeks in April last year.
- Serve situation-specific relevance.
Mobile-optimised, dynamic content is key today, as consumers navigate a fast-changing outside world. To deliver this situational relevance at scale, engagement platforms allow you to set triggers in your customer journeys to display messages based on the user’s actions and current situation – thereby creating real-time marketing moments infused with relevance. Artificial intelligence engines such as Selligent Cortex crunch terabytes of data to churn out individualised offers injected into messages the second a user opens them. Live content capabilities adapt each message to situation and context at the time of reading, while personalising website experiences accordingly.
- Use opt-in to stay connected.
The new normal has caused formation of brand-new habits, many of which revolve around mobile devices. Once your company has gained permission to market on smartphones, make it easy to choose your products and services by serving offers and discounts at opportune moments. Don’t over-message and mind personal boundaries, keeping in mind that mobile reigns as the number-one channel to touch consumers’ lives on a direct level. Ideally, rely on marketing AI (see 2.) to identify user habits and preferences and make offers your audience cannot refuse. For instance, by sending push messages to nudge ordering food delivery 90 minutes before dinner time, when most households are in a ‘hot’ window to make a decision, then allowing them to finish the transactions with just a few swipes on the touchscreen, again and again.
Whether consumers continue to engage with companies at home or by going out into the world, mobile devices are first in mind for a convenient and seamless connection. There’s no denying the fact that brands who recognise the need to provide customers with mobile friendly online shopping experience will have a smoother ride on this road to recovery over the next few weeks, months and years to come.