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How Marketers Can Leverage Mobile Context

How Marketers Can Leverage Mobile Context

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Guest post: by Aubriana Alvarez Lopez who is Lead Strategist, Mobile at Digital Element and President of the Atlanta LBMA. Find out more about her here and connect with her on Twitter.

For decades, we generally relied on one to three different devices to enhance our daily lives: desktop computers at home or the office; mobile phones in the car or in the field; and PDAs for business on the go. Everything had its place. Things were neat and tidy. Manageable. Then…wham…the mobile tsunami hit! Our comfort zones were rocked by the addition of countless devices with different form factors and sophisticated capabilities, using multiple methods to keep us connected virtually anywhere, at any time.
And while the new “mobile society” brings a tidal wave of marketing opportunities for brands, it also creates new challenges of how and when to reach consumers when it matters most. Most brands have a very fragmented customer base: Those who prefer to use desktops, those who only use mobile web, those who rely on apps, and most who use a combination of two or more of these.

Real-Time Intelligence Helps Build Mobile Context
As mobile and connected devices continue to proliferate, it’s increasingly important for marketers to have real-time intelligence to accurately determine which devices are accessing their web services as well as how they’re making those connections (i.e. fixed, WiFi, mobile, etc.). Not only do marketers have to deal with device and connectivity diversity, they also have to understand that consumers engage differently with their devices in different environments. Therefore, a one-size-fits-all web presence has become obsolete for brands who want to successfully reach and engage consumers in today’s complex mobile environment.
Today, mobile marketing is all about layering more depth to create a picture of who the (device) user is. Here’s where mobile context comes into play. Having this information allows brands to adapt their content at a granular level, in order to maximize engagement and conversion rates.

Typical uplift from optimizing content for mobile devices can be as high as 30 percent.

Data Levers Found at Marketers’ Fingertips
So, what solutions are available that can help marketers reach their objectives? There are actually a number of data levers at their disposal:

Device Type
-iPhone, Android, etc.
-Operating environment
-Screen size

Connection Type
-Mobile carrier
-Location (Languages, currency, etc.)

Most importantly, all of these data levers are available in real time, devoid of opt-in solicitation barriers, and without privacy-invasive techniques.

Mobile Context at Work
Let’s take a closer look at how these can benefit marketing decisions.

Connection Type
By understanding Connection Type, you gauge the likeliness of a given consumer to act in the near future. If a website or app visitor is connected via WiFi, they are most likely stationary, at home, in the office, at a coffee shop.  The point is they are not driving in a car, walking down the street or perusing the aisles of your store. A user with a true mobile connection (3G/4G/LTE) is most likely “on the go.” Recognizing the difference between a mobile device and a mobile connection is key.
Another tremendous benefit to knowing connection type is that smart devices connected via WiFi are able to be non-invasively geotargeted. Consumers’ locations can be accurately identified down to a ZIP code level in real-time and without any user inputs.  Advertisers have the ability to show different ads while considering the consumer’s bandwidth and connection speed. For example, a device with a mobile connection may not be the ideal time to show an interactive video ad when a static banner ad would be better suited. This type of data can also assist in verifying the return on investment from online to in-store traffic.

Device Type
Device Type data plays a role in comprehending user preferences. Device recognition data can be derived from the user agent string, or the information which identifies your browser and provides certain system details to servers hosting the websites you visit.  Due to the growing array of connected devices, companies such as dotMobi are successfully offering products, such as DeviceAtlas, that provide accurate device detection in real-time. There have been various reports, one recently from IBM, that show Apple users spent nearly 18 percent more than other shoppers and accounted for more web traffic on retail sites. Even though Android has a much higher share of the smartphone market, people still spend more money shopping on iOS devices, devote more time surfing the web, and buy more books, games, videos and apps.
With “Device Type” data, marketers can send relevant messaging with the most appropriate dimensions for each device, enhancing the user experience and growing brand loyalty.

Device Diversity Is Here to Stay
The web has suddenly changed with a speed that has never been seen in mass media before. Device diversity is here to stay. And, we’re just getting started…In leveraging mobile context, marketers can start to make sense of this complex environment by taking advantage of the data levers that provide deeper intelligence on how devices are accessing their web services in order to provide a seamless, engaging experience regardless of the channel.