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Mobile Trends 2013: Mobile Emerges as Core Digital Marketing Channel

Posted on December 30, 2012
By Shamala DN

2012 saw profound growth across all of the mobile ecosystems: mobile apps, mobile social media, data traffic and mobile advertising.We saw unprecedented competition with the launch of smartphones and mobile operating systems. Mobile advertising turned mainstream and budgets have had to keep pace with smartphone and tablet adoption

So what's coming in 2013?

2013 will see more smartphones and more tablets being sold with exciting innovations. Device wars will widen with the recent launch of Windows 8 and the expected launch of the RIM new platform Blackberry 10. Mobile tops Gartner top ten strategic technology trends for 2013. Mobile devices are known to surpass desktops as the most common ways to go online - making mobile marketing more important than ever. Companies must start looking at innovative mobile marketing strategies to ride the mobile wave. eMarketer predicts that the rapid expansion of smartphone and tablet user populations will cause marketers to shift their ad spending from more traditional media to mobile at an increasing pace. With an optimistic eye towards the future, here are few key mobile trends for marketers to grab opportunities in the coming year.

  1. Mobile Search

    Consumers are increasingly using smartphones to search on the internet and to access local information. Location aware queries such as restaurant searches, ATMs, Fuel stations are becoming more common on mobile devices. This trend will continue to expand to other services and advertisers need to deliver relevant ads based on keywords.
  2. Location Services

    Most of the devices have a GPS transmitter and can track where users are when they post online. Many consumers now willingly use this to check in to places to share their location. This is huge for targeted marketing where ads can be targeted based on a set radius, profile people based on their travel and location patterns and deliver targeted campaigns.
  3. Mobile Shopping

    We have already seen this year the retailers incorporating mobile solutions into their sales strategy by offering special discounts, mobile coupons, mobile shopping etc. with targeted advertising. This trend will further grow in 2013 with retailers looking at new ways to attract and retain customers.
  4. NFC

    Many mobile devices now have NFC units used to send data from mobile device to another device supporting NFC. The use of this technology is gaining momentum in mobile payments and related services. This provides a great opportunity for marketers to create discount coupons and distribute them via mobile which makes more convenient for consumers to carry and redeem.
  5. Real Time Bidding (RTB)

    RTB is emerging to become the dominant way to buy mobile media with instant auction. RTB is outperforming traditional ad buying with application of market dynamics to mobile advertising. Advertisers get more access, targeting and transparency while the sellers generate higher eCPMs and have greater control over their inventory.
  6. Ever-Growing Mobile Apps

    With the raise in smartphone adoption year over year, the mobile apps have exploded in 2012 with app stores promoting thousands of different applications. These trends are very important for mobile marketers to target the type of applications based on the popularity of apps. App developers get a greater chance of generating more revenue via in-app advertising.
  7. Cloud

    Cloud storage and cloud-based services like Dropbox, Google drive, Evernote etc., will become more important in the coming years which allow users to access and share information anywhere. Users will be able to capture and edit data from multiple channels such as desktop, phones and tablets and any changes are automatically pushed to other devices.
  8. Multi-Screening

    There has been a growth in multi-screen users this year with consumers progressing their day on multiple devices such as smartphones, tablets and desktop. This provides a great opportunity for advertisers to connect the dots by following the consumers across these channels and delivering consistent and relevant messages bringing the strength of each of the channels.

Bright Future Lies Ahead

Mobile continues to be a key and growing strategy for many companies as browsing, shopping and networking all go mobile. The growing percentage of internet traffic from various devices by itself should be convincing for marketers to increase their mobile marketing budget. As the technology becomes more and more advanced, marketing will become more integrated and real-time and marketers have much to look forward to in 2013 and beyond. eMarketer expects US mobile ad spending to reach $7.19 billion in 2013 and nearly $21 billion by 2016, a significant upward trend. So there is no doubt that 2013 will be another booming year for the players in mobile ecosystem. Have a safe and healthy New Year!

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