Mobile marketing in context

by: on 12 June 2015

Laura Castrillo from POSSIBLE outlines how to leverage existing analytics to boost conversion, taking lessons from Disney

Since implementation Disney has since reported a 20% increase in income to $805 million from its parks and resorts
Mobile is at the centre of our world. In 2008 Mary Meeker, a technology analyst at Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers, predicted that mobile usage would overtake fixed internet usage by the end of 2014. This was a bold prediction at the time, but at the start of 2015 comScore reported that 80 per cent of internet users were conducting searches via their smart phones, and nearly half through tablets. With mobile playing such a huge part in everyday life it’s essential that brands are tapping into this channel to interact with consumers. Many brands attempt this but not all succeed, so how can they do this effectively? Mobile shopping seems an obvious answer, but purchasing habits are just one half of the story. The real issue is how brands use mobile data to understand consumer behaviour and drive reach, engagement and conversion. 
Consumers demand convenience, whether that’s being offered a product or service at the right time, in the right place or in the right way. In the hotel industry for example, consumers are particularly open to using their mobile devices when they travel, and not just to get information. Features that allow consumers to check in or out of their hotel, and notify them when their room is ready present an ideal marketing opportunity for brands. Similarly, in the festival scene marketers are engaging with mobile users by providing useful information to enhance their experience. The team at Coachella used the festival’s mobile app to notify festival-goers as to what was going on at nearby stages based on their location in the site and provide directions to concerts within the festival. It is the brands that are tapping into consumer behaviour and providing useful information that are driving real engagement. 
Given this context, how can brands make the most of context marketing? There are two approaches that should be considered; tapping into existing analytics, and using the value of analytics from new technologies. Through these approaches brands can increase their reach, engage with consumers and convert mobile data into real life relationships, with tangible results. 
One of the primary objectives of a marketing campaign is to increase brand awareness. This is something that can be achieved effectively through partnering with existing data capture platforms. If a brand were to partner with Shazam for example, it can increase its awareness through the app and make advertising geographically targeted. When a user Shazam’s a song the app can display custom advertising not only based on the user’s location data, but also based on a user’s preferences, ensuring messages are reaching the consumers brands are most eager to engage with. 
Using existing analytics can help a brand prioritise activities and, as a result, create better engagement with consumers. A great example of this is Skype’s One To Watch campaign, which partnered with up-and-coming bands to drive engagement with a younger generation. Through analysing behavioural data of consumers on the social channels of partner bands, marketers at Skype were able to identify which platforms were the most popular among a band’s fan base, and therefore learn how to optimise promotion activity.   
By analysing this data, Skype was able to generate a much larger reach, and create excitement and engagement with its young customers.   
Using data and analytics to grow brand awareness and encourage engagement is important, but to make a campaign truly successful these need to lead to real life results for a brand. Tapping into emerging technologies is an important step in converting mobile relationships into tangible results, as data can be collated and analysed in real time. 
Media and entertainment company Disney has been using wearable mobile devices, Magic Bands, to do just this. Since implementing its Magic Band system, marketers have been able to track when consumers open a hotel door, enter theme parks, pay for food and buy souvenirs. The wristbands can also trigger unique moments in attractions based on consumers’ ability to book FastPass+ tickets in advance, and skip the queue to popular rides. In essence, Disney’s Magic Bands allow the company to track both visitor’s movements and their spend in far more detail than ever before, and in real time. 
By analysing user flows through its parks, the marketers at Disney can optimise when to prompt users with offers and upgrade opportunities, to see actual physical increase in sales. Since implementation the company has since reported a 20 per cent increase in income to $805 million from its parks and resorts. 
Driving conversion comes from using the data available to understand consumer priorities and needs. In the hotel industry for example, rather than simply texting visitors to notify them when their room is ready, hoteliers could go one step further and supplement this with an incentive: ‘Why not wait in the hotel bar where you will receive a 10 per cent discount?’ Not only would the customer be kept engaged, but the hotel will also receive added value.  
Making the most of new technologies and analysing the data that can be collected from them is the way forward for context marketing. Never before have brands had the opportunity to delve so deep into the behavioural patterns of their target audience, and this wealth of data should be taken advantage of to improve the user experience and get the best results. According to comScore, nine percent of internet users are using a smart watch and seven per cent a smart wristband just like Disney’s Magic Band. Similar to mobile in 2008, these new wearable devices are only set to grow in popularity, and therefore provide the opportunity to drive considerable return for brands.  
By Laura Castrillo, director of analytics, POSSIBLE