The Exploding Age of the Mobile Customer


Last week, we started a discussion about the mobile trend in content marketing. Today, we are going to continue that discussion for a more in-depth look at what this trend towards mobile actually looks like.

Our Mobile Customers

What should be apparent to each and every one of us is how much our mobile devices affect our day to day lives. Over the last five-to-ten years, especially with the increase of smartphones replacing our previous cell phones and the addition of tablets and smartwatches to our technological repertoire, nearly all could claim that we have “gone mobile.” A quick look at the Forrester website provides us with an excellent breakdown of what this changeover looks like on a larger scale:

forrestersnapshot

These numbers only stand to increase, especially as more and more of us become accustomed to instant gratification and the ability to work (and shop) on the go. In case there was any question as to whether the average person would actually use their mobile device for connecting to work, or completing transactions, a quick look at how many hours are spent on smartphones or tablets should hint at the answer. According to Cisco (1), “mobile data traffic has grown 4,000-fold over the past 10 years and almost 400-million-fold over the past 15 years.” Furthermore, within the next five years, “The number of mobile-connected devices per capita will reach 1.5 by 2020.” With these increases in access to mobile devices and mobile data, the logical next step as a business is to reach out to our customers to meet them on their own terms. Because of the unique experience of using a mobile device, this means we must go further than putting up a standard website and expecting this to translate to our customers.

Content Publishing Today VS Tomorrow

As great as we all find instant access to the internet and its endless information, mobile devices tend to provide some types of content more instantly than others. Several factors go into this, which we will go into further detail on in our next post. However, at its most basic, it’s simple to understand that sites optimized for mobile devices, or connecting through an app, will provide the best experience for the visitor/customer. This has an obvious impact on A, how we publish our content, and B, how we reach out to our customers.  Data Conservation Laboratory, Inc, provides a helpful breakdown of our current state of content publishing:TrendsSurvey2016-Q5-FormatsYouPublish(2)

 

While there are a number of interesting things to note here, what stands out to me is that only about 40% publish content either for mobile devices or for a mobile app. With the number of mobile devices continually on the rise, as well as the amount of time spent on them increasing just as fast, there can be no doubt that institutions who do not make the effort to accommodate mobile devices are being left out and left behind. When we stop to consider that the customer’s needs and desires should always be our first priority, we should realize these numbers must be improved. Even more, merely publishing to a more desirable format itself does not necessitate that it is being done well, or effectively. While we will delve deeper into more effective strategies in our next post, for now let us note that the trend toward mobile has not gone unnoticed.

As we can see below, while today, only 39% of respondents said they publish for a mobile device and 40% to a mobile app, within the next three years, 48% will publish for a mobile device, and 65% for a mobile app.

TrendsSurvey2016-Q6-PlanToPublish

(2)

While these numbers mean a large percentage of marketers and institutions are missing out on an ever-important segment of their customer base, at least we all recognize the growing necessity to reaching our customers where they want to be reached. Right in the palm of their hands.

Please join us for our next post, where we will discuss more in depth the efficacy of mobile apps and mobile responsive sites, common mistakes when creating and publishing in that format, and how to improve your mobile strategy.

 

  1.  Cisco 2016, Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2015–2020 White Paper. http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/solutions/collateral/service-provider/visual-networking-index-vni/mobile-white-paper-c11-520862.html
  2.  DCL Inc, 2016 Trends Survey: Infographic, http://dclab.com/resources/surveys/dcl-cidm-trends-survey-2016