The Mobile Marketing Association today published its top ten mobile marketing trends to watch in 2011, and even though they’re aimed at the Asia Pacific region, they outline similar trends on a global scale.
The MMA predicts the global mobile advertising market is expected to grow to $13 to $14 billion in 2011, with Asia Pacific expected to bring in the majority of this revenue followed by North America and Europe.
“Recent industry reports from InMobi and Synovate have revealed that consumers are showing a greater inclination towards receiving mobile advertising and marketing messages,”said Rohit Dadwal, Managing Director, MMA Asia Pacific Pte Ltd. ”As the market continues to grow, we hope to continue to provide insights that we believe should to be on the radar screen of every organisation when deciding on their mobile spend for the region.”
Here’s the MMA’s top 10 trends to watch in 2011:
1. Personalization and privacy will increase effectiveness and credibility of the mobile media as a marketing channel: As mobile technology continues to evolve, mobile marketing messages will become increasingly personalised / relevant. Additionally, the adoption of transparent, permission-based marketing along with the introduction of regulations and applications for blocking unwanted content will help overcome the perception that mobile advertising is nothing but spam. Mobile will be the only truly conversational and measurable medium that can lead to an actual, real-time increase in business-to-consumer transactions.
2. Over the top services will drive data usage – On-deck operator ad revenues will be overshadowed by over the top application-based value-added services revenues. These services will help create mobile inventory and enable greater mobile ad spend. Operators should take a step back from establishing their own app stores and concentrate on enabling more converged devices like tablets. Telecom service providers will be forced to review their publishing business investments and plans.
3. Free SMS/free video/free phone calls will be available across devices – Applications like WhatsApp and Viber are already allowing free SMS and calls from mobile devices. More such applications will be entering the market making these basic mobile features available free of cost across devices. We will also keep seeing an increase in mobile video consumption. The introduction of new ad units, including interactive and partial screen, will subsidize free content.
4. The re-birth of Windows 7 mobile – The new and relatively strict hardware specifications introduced by Microsoft are geared towards providing a universal user experience much like Research In Motion (RIM) and Apple. Based on prior experience with the availability of too many phones variants, Microsoft is focused on restricting the use of its new operating system by phones that are not compatible. The re-birth of the Windows 7 mobile will further fuel the growth of mobile Internet and advertising.
5. New winner in the HTML5 vs Apps war – A lot has been said about how apps are expected to peak in 2013 and have already shown signs of slowing down. Though the new HTML offers great opportunities, apps and app stores continue to rule mobile content. The availability of basic functions of an app even without an active or stable data connection combined with the high level of usability and engagement offered by app stores make it a much more appealing option for customers. However, the fact that apps are device specific and limit penetration offers opportunities for experimentation that might lead to a decline in their popularity over the coming years.
6. Location-Based Services (LBS) + Augmented Reality (AR) will be the leading integrated mobile technology in the market – The proliferation of GPS phones with digital compasses has already given rise to a series of location-based AR software platforms and applications. The combination of AR with LBS allows for graphic content related to the position of the user to be overlaid in real-time onto camera images taken by the phone. This makes for one of the most intuitive user interface currently available on mobile and also makes the consumption of location-based information a lot more fun. Such specific targeting will not only fuel ad spend but also transactions.
7. Mobile micropayments will allow customers to pay from their ‘electronic wallets’ rather than ATM cards - The electronic payment industry is growing rapidly and provides significant opportunities for all electronic payment channels including those on mobile platforms. In developing countries, mobile banking services can address a service gap that is critical to their development. The key advantage of the introduction of mobile payment will be quick transactions. There are no credit card readers, no paper slips and more security than written forms. It will be like an electronic wallet that a customer will always have access to and will provide them with relevant purchase opportunities while they’re on-the-go.
8. The re-emergence of mobile blogging – As mobile phones become more sophisticated and feature-rich, they are increasingly being used as a replacement for computers. With the introduction and adoption of tablet devices, the consumers now have greater speed, connectivity and battery life in their mobile devices. Several writers/bloggers are already using these devices to pen down their thoughts. With processing power that allows for editing and upload of content in various formats, these mobile devices are fast becoming the preferred travel gadget for professionals and have created opportunities for the development of a whole new set of user applications.
9. Continued proliferation of smartphones and mobile Internet advertising – It is expected that by 2011 over 85% of handsets shipped globally will have browser capabilities. The relatively large growth in smartphones combined with their superior user interface will continue to encourage more people to access conventional websites on their mobile handsets. Business-to-consumer applications can be delivered using conventional Web tools as well as Web adaptation tools. As smartphone penetration increases, more users will possess the technology to view richer content on their mobile devices making the medium extremely useful for marketers.
10. Mobiles will jump onto the 3D bandwagon – 3D technology is being incorporated in any and every gadget available in the market today. Mobile manufacturers have also experimented with the technology and Spice Mobility in India has already introduced a phone with 3D capabilities. Manufacturers still have a long way to go in terms of creating a sophisticated 3D mobile device but the market will see a lot more experimentation in 3D phones in the coming year. The technology will lead to the development of new content and advertising avenues.