Archive for July, 2016
Imaginatrix has been saying it for some time and we’ll say it again – not only is the ability to personalise advertising one of the key benefits of mobile marketing, but personalisation is also the way mobile marketing agencies and their clients reap the benefits of this discipline.
Estate agents have “position, position, position” as their mantra. Ours should be “personalisation, personalisation, personalisation”. It’s both why you do mobile marketing and how you do it better.
With this in mind, an aptly-named company called Loyalty Builders this week did its bit for growing the mobile marketing sector by sharing some wisdom. It came up with some great recommendations to do with how retailers can lift revenue through more personal marketing to consumers. Let’s take a look at three of these recommendations:
1. Get More Value from Less Data
To predict customers’ purchasing behavior, focus on their purchase history. It’s far more simple and cost-effective. And of course, as anyone worth their salt in business will tell you – and the local shrink to boot! – the past is the best predictor of future behaviour. And it’s the most personal of data. Additional data on customers can be helpful, but can lead down a slippery slope of increasing time and cost when purchase records are what you have and all you need.
2. Simpler Can Be More Accurate
Using a few universally available and very predictive variables usually delivers the best accuracy. That’s because too many variables can lead to errors of over-fitting the data with conflicting indicators and unjustifiable complexity. Fewer input variables reduce cost of data acquisition while yielding models that are usually easier to interpret. It’s hard to beat simple yet effective!
3. Focusing on the Best Predictions with Automation
Where there is a limited, known and consistent set of data inputs and outputs, it’s possible to automate without losing the ability to derive personalised information. Automation drives down cost, reduces errors, saves time and enables consistency and repeatability. Scores and product recommendations can easily be calculated for each individual consumer.
Apple’s sad foray into the mobile advertising world never really took off. It was always going to be tricky balancing the twin demands of being a leading global consumer brand and a mobile advertising platform to boot, and now we’re back to the former as iAds – finally – does a complete shutdown this week. We’ve mentioned the fire sale of iAds before on this blog, the only difference this time is that it is actually happening.
So how well did iAds actually do? Well, according to Mobile Marketing Magazine, “iAd never truly took off, accounting for only 5.4 per cent of US mobile ad display revenues in 2015 and generating only a fraction of Apple’s overall revenues.” Imaginatrix would love to have five percent of the US market but I guess when you have the ambition of Apple, 5% is nowhere close to where you want to be.
The postmortem of the company’s in-app advertising platform that originally existed to help app developers and publishers monetise their work (a noble endeavour indeed) will surely take place now. For me, the ‘walled garden’ approach did iAd in. The iAd platform only allowed advertisers to serve ads to users on the iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. Seriously, how can you be so shortsighted? Oh, and it was just too expensive for advertisers. So you have a platform that didn’t reach enough people and was too expensive. There you have two classic reasons for a marketing platform to fail.
The above notwithstanding, Imaginatrix has a special place in its heart for initiatives that seek to monetise mobile. We were intimately involved with the monetising of Vodacom’s Please Call Me service and we’re still working on new ways to further grow that mobile marketing platform beyond the text tags that have proven so popular with South African and continental African brands. Monetisation is the holy grail of mobile marketing and can actually materialise with a lot of clever thought and hard work by mobile veterans that know what they’re doing, and who’ve done it before. Need we say more?
Here’s some news just in from the world’s marketing media. Research from some or other cloud computing firm – Rackspace – suggests that time-saving apps and online tools aimed at disrupting traditional ways of working, buying and living are saving the average UK consumer 2.2 hours per month. That’s about 52 million hours each month, just for that economy. Both the UK and SA have similar-sized populations and SA is a world leader in mobile access to the web, so there’s no reason to suspect the results would be very different here. We think the means might be somewhat different, but the outcome virtually identical.
Essentially, what this all means is that – to get it down to the nuts and bolts – loads of people are using the web to buy loads of stuff because it’s just easier that way. And, when it comes to consumer purchasing behaviour, mobile marketing is a very useful double-edged sword. Double-edged sword? Well, yes. In the very positive sense of it being an enabler of purchasing activity, of course.
Not only does mobile marketing help our clients sell stuff on the web, mobile marketing also drives foot traffic in traditional brick and mortar stores. So when we read the results of research conducted by firms by Rackspace, there’s no need to despair over the shops on the local strip mall. This is because mobile is both enabling web-based purchasing, and driving traffic to traditional stores because of its effect on consumer decision-making. You’ll just never be able to beat a tactile shopping experience, no matter how fast your courier is, or how easy you make it for unhappy customers to return goods.