I recently attended Adtech in San Francisco, a digital marketing conference in US. And some of the insights I got from speaking to industry experts and thought leaders validated my initial perception that mobile marketing and M-commerce is at the onset of taking off here in the US and in Asia with Japan being the only leader in this space. It reminded me of my days when I was getting out of Engineering school back in 1996.
As an Electronics and Communication Engineering graduate, I landed in the emerging wireless industry at the time. I was probably the only one who even had a wireless phone based on GSM technology (thanks to the wireless service provider company I was working for at that time). It was clear to me that I was at the intersection of the biggest mobile revolution that would change the world. And it did.
From feature phones to iPhones to Andriod Phones, the world of mobile communication has come a long way. And just like we were at the helm of wireless communication over fifteen years ago, I believe that we are now at the intersection of the biggest revolution at the intersection of M-commerce and Mobile marketing.
Here are some of my observations:
The New Media renaissance: When SMS marketing was experimented with, it took a lot of heat from the mobile users.But with guidelines that were put in place by the mobile operators; mobile marketing via SMS has expanded rapidly in Europe and Asia as a new channel to reach the consumer. Now the industry is looking at mobile as not only a way of “Targeting” users but to become “Business solutions”. I love that I can use location based services by some cell phone networks as a way to send custom advertising and other information to cell-phone subscribers based on their current location.
The Mobile web : We all know that FB gives marketers access to over 200M users growing exponentially. But another statistics that is mind boggling is that 65M users are accessing FB through mobile devices. Infact mobile FB users are 50% more active on FB than the rest of the users. And the 80 mobile operators in over 60 countries are to deploy FB mobile products in the coming future. Advertisers are increasingly using the mobile Web as platform to reach consumers. The total value of advertising on mobile was 2.2 billion dollars in 2007. A recent study by the Online Publishers Association reports that about one-in-ten mobile Web users said they have made a purchase based on a mobile Web ad, while 23% said they have visited a Web site, 13% said they have requested more information about a product or service and 11% said they have gone to a store to check out a product.
M-commerce: Gives the ability to conduct commerce using a mobile device, such as a mobile phone, a Personal digital assistantPDA, a smartphone, or other emerging mobile equipment such as dashtop mobile devices. Everything that you ever got from your AppStore on iPhone falls in this category. But this is reaching new heights when game developers bring out games like we city where you are required to get ZAP from Zap store within the game or in Angry birds, get frustrated in clearing a session and get power to get through it.
What will be the next big thing? Ever wondered about a mobile social network…keep a watch…its coming soon.
—Contributed by Deepika Bajaj, President and Founder, Invincibelle, LLC and co-founder, ActiveGarage (the company behind 99tribes). Deepika is also the author of the book DiversityTweet: Embracing the growing diversity in our world and Pink and Grow Rich:11 Unreasonable Rules for Success You can follow Deepika on Twitter at invincibelle