Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Future of Marketing? Looking at Mobile

The recent $12.5-billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility by tech giant Google has the marketing world buzzing about the future of mobile. By purchasing the means of production, Google is cementing itself firmly as a mobile player well beyond the former implications of Android (even putting itself in competition with some of it's Android-running mobile partners.



So why is Mobile the next big thing? As reported by Memeburn:

"The overall growth of mobile over the next two years is predicted to be the most pronounced in the US, which will represent 28 percent of the global market, and Western Europe, which will account for 25 percent.

77 percent of the global population uses mobile phones and with current expansion rates, web access by people on the move — via laptops and smart mobile devices — is likely to exceed web access from desktop computers within the next four years."
We'll be exploring more about mobile in a series of upcoming posts.

Reason 1. Shopping To-Go
A recent report by comScore reported that "14 Million Americans Scanned QR Codes on their Mobile Phones in June 2011." With users scanning codes from printed materials and product packaging, suddenly both the marketing and advertising experience and the user experience have been expanded. While many are scanning codes from home, and likely experiencing marketing materials as a result, the report showed that "39.4 percent [of users scanned a code] from a retail store and 24.5 percent did so from a grocery store." Clearly users are interacting with QR codes as part of their shopping experience.

Taking that further, retailers can now also allow in-store comparison shopping via mobile apps. This could be a positive feature for brick-and-mortar stores, such as with the Best Buy Mobile app, or it could turn shoppers towards online shopping. For example, the new Amazon mobile app for students "Amazon Student" allows for in-store comparison shopping. According to Mobile Beat "Students standing in a bookstore can look at their syllabus, scan a book’s barcode with the iPhone or iPod touch camera, and determine whether the bookstore is ripping them off."

Clearly mobile is changing the in-store experience. Will you be using apps or QR codes to connect your online community to in-person experiences? What other mobile technology is being developed in this field? Share with us in the comments, and stay tuned for future explorations of mobile marketing.

Michelle LeBlanc is a Social Media Strategist at IIR USA with a specialization in marketing. She may be reached at mleblanc@iirusa.com


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