Every day, there seems to be some sort of new stat that amazes me about how relevant smartphones are to the population at large. The latest evidence of this comes in the form of an article on Mashable entitled “85% of Smartphone Users Would Rather Give Up Water Than Mobile Apps.” In the article, we learn that Apigee conducted a survey of 762 smartphone users in 5 different countries and apparently 85% of this sample indicated that high degree of importance the smartphone has in their life. This seems astonishing to me because any junior high life science class tells a person that water is the essential building block of life. Meanwhile, my nearly nonagenarian grandmother has lived a productive, fruitful life without using a single mobile app or ever even owning a desktop computer.
The Apigee survey provided some humorous tidbits about dependence upon mobile apps. Apparently, 32% of people would be unable to wake up without one. 23% of people said that they could not feel happiness without mobile apps, and 10% need mobile apps to impress people. 18% of French people say that they could not order dinner without one, remarkable considering how the French are considered to be connoisseurs of food.
Of course, the Apigee survey isn’t the only piece of data that would indicate that the prevalence and dependence upon the mobile device. Forbes ran an article last year “Generation Y Going Nowhere, And They’re Fine With That”. The article indicated that for teens and 20 somethings, the cell phone is a more important status symbol than a car. One of our favorite infographics around the Distribion office is a piece called The Rise of Distributed Marketing. The infographic informs that 5.1 billion people own a cell phone, and only 4.2 billion own a toothbrush. Also, the average person doesn’t realize that their wallet is missing for 26 hours, but it only takes 68 minutes to realize that the phone is missing.
The Apigee survey indicated that the apps that are considered to be vital are Email (57% of respondents), Facebook (41% ) and alarm & clock (31%). This just speaks to the proliferation of online marketing channels that we’ve been talking about frequently on this blog. If checking email and Facebook are considered more vital than being conscious (a prerequisite for checking email & Facebook) and knowing what time of day it is, what does this tell brand marketers?
The first thing that can be observed is that email is still considered relevant. Because of this, email marketing must still be considered an important tool in the toolbox of any brand marketer. Advertising can often be perceived as a combination of aesthetics (style of the message) and substance of the message. With regard to aesthetics, brand marketers need to be aware of the fact that emails have the potential to have display issues depending upon the mail client and type of device that the intended reader is using. This is a concern that mostly every modern marketing manager has encountered in their day to day activities. Distribion has thought of this concern and addressed through an integration with Litmus. With Litmus, one can preview how their email is going to look in 30+ email clients. It is always to good to know that the message as intended is getting to the recipient. How the recipient perceived the message is how they will begin to form brand beliefs, and quality aesthetics are a good way to start to make a fantastic impression. It should by no means be considered an end, as the substance of the email message still matters. The words used will still impact the overall communication process.
Social media is a big part of the equation as well for brand marketers, and your messaging in the social space is likely to drive your top of mind awareness amongst your target consumer. With mobile as prevalent as it is, your potential to reach your target market is so much greater. With data indicating that a lot of us are attached to our phones 24/7/365, it becomes far more necessary to be where they are all the time. Being omnipresent requires marketing automation, as marketing processes become more complicated in a multi-channel, around the clock marketing cycle.
Since many people consider their mobile device as essential to to their survivability, and people make purchase decisions, brands must consider addressing the mobile strategy as essential to their viability in the marketplace.