A friend recently lamented over lunch that he was having trouble getting traction with some cool mobile tech that he's representing. He wondered aloud if mobile might be losing steam and if our infatuation with the small screen could fade. But I think he was looking at the big picture through too small a window.
As a marketer, you need to think about more than the obvious shape and size differences between a television, mobile phone, desktop computer or tablet screen. The crucial intelligence isn’t found in the horizontal versus vertical formats, or even in the coolness factor of mobile — it’s in the data that tells you who is watching what, when and on what device. Knowing who the viewers are, in all their behavioral and demographic flavors, and what devices they prefer, allows you to track, cross-reference and act on critical details. This is the insight you need to drive revenue and move leads through your funnel.
Think about it. If you’re the VP of programming for Comcast, with shows as varied as the hour-long drama Downtown Abbey and a 15-minute Web-streamed robot wrestling video, your ad salespeople need to differentiate all ad formats and content by audience. In other words, you market to a sophisticated drama viewer quite differently than you do the casual watcher of a Web-based action show.
Shape the Content to the User
Certainly, knowing that a tablet user has watched your robot wrestling match helps you customize the content you deliver to that viewer. But you can increase your marketing mojo substantially when you pair that information with data that shows the same tableteer watched X-Games reruns on his phone last month.
With fresh (and constantly refreshed) user data, your marketing can shift gears fast. Say your skateboard company targets 15-year-old boys. But through careful tracking, you discover that more 30-year-old women are buying your skateboards. Using the right automation platform, you can create (and tweak) an engagement scoring model based on behaviors, demographics and purchase history, then use each contact’s score to dynamically personalize emails to individually target all pertinent buying segments and profiles on all screen sizes.
You can store and filter multiscreen usage data to deliver content that’s not only personalized, but also refined over time. And with Web-enabled TVs increasing in popularity, there's yet another screen that delivers actionable information, and yet another reason to embrace both vertical and horizontal platforms.
You Need a Mobile Strategy — and Then Some
Let’s give mobile its due. Last fall, at a symposium in Barcelona, Gartner analysts discussed the ways consumer embrace devices, and projected that sales of mobile devices will pass the $1 billion mark this year. Clearly, Marshall McLuhan's infamous words, "The medium is the message," still carry a lot of weight.
Naturally, the rise in the sale of mobile devices will trigger a rise in mobile-enabled ads and overall use. So it’s more important than ever to develop a multiscreen strategy — one that helps shape your marketing and provokes your customers to act. Here’s a handy infographic that might get your developers cranking on mobile-enabling your Web pages, if they aren't already.
There’s no question that the iPhone/Android and iPad/Nexus wars will continue to make headlines, but the real story is what’s gleaned from behind the screens, no matter their size. So, you have a choice: you can spend a lot of valuable time analyzing data and wondering how to put it to good use, or you can get a customized marketing automation system to do the heavy lifting for you.
Here are a few ways to make automation as easy as 1, 2, 3:
1) Capture Data Relentlessly: Glean rich information about your contacts across all channels and platforms so you can deliver increasingly relevant content.
2) Refine and Define: Once you’ve got the data, dissect it. Don’t merely segment emails to your under-30 and over-40 crowds; go deep. Use tools to tell you which Web visitor in Michigan only watches videos, and which Mumbai-based visitor only downloads white papers.
3) Personalize Your Pitches: Nurture newcomers with an onboarding campaign that shifts based on their actions; feed the hungry with your meatiest programs; and thank the faithful for their patronage. When the numbers come back, capture them and use that knowledge to drive a new — and better — campaign.
Knowing what makes your customers tick means knowing what will make them click. Shoot me a line at @PerCaroe and we can discuss the program that best suits your marketing needs.
1) White Paper: “Multiscreen Maturation: Email Design Strategies and Tips for Connecting Across Devices”
2) Blog: “5 Creative Ways to Use Scoring”
3) White Paper: “20 Ways to Personalize Content and Enhance the Customer Experience”