ForeSee, Millennial Media Share Mobile Trends, Holiday Expectations

The Mobile Marketing Summit: Holiday Focus 2012 conference was held during September 13, 2012, at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York City. The one-day event included a number of speakers from Barnes & Noble, Bloomberg, ForeSee, Groupon, HSN, Kraft Foods, Millennial Media, NBC and other industry leaders.  

During the conference, Larry Freed, President and CEO of research firm ForeSee, said that while addressing and measuring the customer experience is important, it also is one of the biggest challenges that retailers face.

Freed’s presentation, titled: “Understanding the Holiday Mobile Shopper: Data, Actionable Insights and Analysis,” highlighted the demographics of today’s mobile shoppers, how patterns of behavior have evolved and shoppers’ intended use of mobile during the upcoming holidays.  


Holiday Mobile Expectations

In a recent ForeSee report, as many as 39% of mobile users said they will use their devices this holiday season to conduct more research on products, followed by 26% who noted they will turn to their mobile devices do more research while in a store.

The use of smartphones for e-Commerce is expected to increase this holiday season for two reasons: 1) the sheer number of tablet and smartphones; and 2) the growing comfort consumers have with these devices.

For retail marketers, mobile is the ability to see where consumers go, what they do and how they fit into an audience, said Paul Palmieri, CEO of Millennial Media, a mobile advertising and data company. “What makes [understanding consumers through mobile browsing behaviors] powerful is its simplicity; you can target consumers as they look at car web sites or literally as they’re entering the car lots.”

Using Location-Based Mobile Ads To Attract Customers

Location-based marketing is a strategy that allows marketers to understand the browsing habits of consumers while tracking them in action, according to Palmieri.  “Mobile helps us to target real-world audiences with location-based services that reveal their specific browsing behaviors.”

Mobile, according to Palmieri, is the only medium directly based on location and can connect marketers directly to consumers in the store. While traditional advertising such as billboards and signage can help convert customers into shoppers, it is not enough to make consumers want to engage with brands or enter a store. “I can tell you that consumers don’t really care about signs that are hung in stores anymore,” explained Palmieri, “but they do care about what is on their phones.” 

There is no formula for the right brand-building messages or performance strategies, noted Melissa Laux, Associate Director of U.S. Media at Kraft Foods. During her keynote presentation, titled “Kraft Foods: How Mobile Is Transforming the Global Snacks Powerhouse,” Kaux advised retailers to rethink and reinvent their marketing strategies through in-store, impulse and integration of mobile.

“We’re pulling [the mobile budget] from all different areas,” said Kaux, “because mobile spans across the entire marketing strategy.”

In addition to playing an important role in the Kraft Foods marketing strategy for its own branded applications, mobile also is key to various third-party applications such as shopkick and Viggle.

Kraft Foods partnered with shopkick to engage customers through multiple touch points, such as offering coupons when customers check into stores and encouraging shoppers to scan items while browsing store aisles. In addition, Kraft Foods collaborated with Viggle “to offer content, curate feeds and invite users to participate in a dialogue with its brands,” noted Mobile Marketer in a recent article.

As more retailers continue to embrace mobile as part of their marketing strategies, Kaux suggested they invest and learn from this technology as it becomes bigger and more mainstream.

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