Move Over Mobile, 2015 Is the Year of the Consumer

It seems like the last several years have all been dubbed “The Year of Mobile” for marketers. So much so that the idea that 2015 might finally be the year mobile breaks through to become marketing mainstream seems passé.

That doesn’t mean that multi-device marketing is not going to be important in the coming year. Mobile devices will continue to permeate our lives and shape consumer behaviors. According to eMarketer’s latest figures, the number of global smartphones users will surpass 2 billion by 2016. Advertisers worldwide recognize the increasing penetration of mobile internet and its impact on consumers, and in response, plan to spend more than $64 billion on mobile ads in 2015, 60 percent more than that spent in 2014.


Given this growth, search marketers shouldn’t look to write off mobile. Let’s just reframe the conversation. Instead of 2015 being another “year of mobile,” let’s make the focus on the consumer.

The modern consumer is device-savvy and has high expectations for brands to deliver a seamless, high-value experience whether on a desktop, mobile Web, or an app. But, is this actually happening? A study conducted earlier in 2014 found that a gap remains between consumer mobile expectations and search marketer execution, particularly when it comes to mobile optimized landing pages and tailored ad copy.

If you want to succeed in connecting with your audiences in 2015, here are three customer-centric mobile best practices to consider:

1. Create Compelling, Relevant Creative

The 2013 switch to Google Enhanced Campaigns surfaced conversations and strategies over campaigns structures and bid modifiers. One year later, the performance impact of this switch was less dramatic than most people expected with 70 percent of marketers seeing either no change in performance or actually seeing improvements one year on.


With performance stability under control, marketers should look to improve ad creative that will resonate with consumers. Test messaging variations with different calls to action and promotional callouts and think about your audience when doing so. Of course, thinking through bid strategy is still important as there is limited mobile real estate, but with more compelling creative you’ll up your chances of capturing interaction.

2. Consider Common Conversion Types

Research from Yahoo has confirmed that mobile searches don’t just occur on the go. Consumers are engaging with their devices in a variety of different manners and your strategy should reflect that. Consider the actions you take while on your mobile devices — that’s probably what your consumers are doing, too.

Make things easy for them by enabling functionality such as click-to-call, which will facilitate a conversion that comes naturally on a phone (unlike a form submission). Then, leverage smart technology that enables you to connect the dots and track which keywords are driving your highest-value calls and optimize your program accordingly.

The “mobility” with mobile is still key, too. Drive customers in-store with location extensions and relevant, location-based offers. People will appreciate this “instant gratification” that you’re able to serve up.

3. Think About Insights in Terms of Consumer Activity

The unique challenges that the mobile environment creates with identifying consumers may inhibit marketers from spending time and money to figure out mobile. However, with the appropriate technology in place, you can connect a common identifier across devices to track activity. If you have an app, enlist an SDK for tracking downstream engagement beyond the click to understand app interactions and begin to optimize toward lifetime value.

The Bottom Line

With terms like “people-based” marketing popping up, you may be poised to add a new term to your buzzword bingo card, but the reality is that customer centricity is a valuable investment.

The technology, automation, innovations are there to execute, so spend your time going back to the roots of the consumer you’re targeting and let’s make 2015 the year we put people first.

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