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How Digital Marketers can Conquer the Mobile Data Analytics Challenge


Last week, Adobe released a report of a survey on data analytics which threw up a surprising nugget of information. It showed that marketers were still lagging IT teams in the use of mobile analytics.

While noting that data and analytics were driving changes in many fields such as privacy and data security, personalization, and even progressive mobile website experiences, the survey found that marketers remained behind the curve in their use.

One of the questions asked of respondents was whether they used analytics technology? Only 58% of marketers had said yes, compared to 71% of IT professionals. About 58% of marketers had also added that they calculated lifetime values (LTV) for customers based on in-app behaviors versus as many as 68% of IT professionals.

Mobile analytics involves the collection of user data, studying the metrics to understand customer intent, and then initiating such action as necessary to engage and retain the customer. The tech focuses largely on analytics for mobile and Enterprise apps, although it does include the mobile web.

In the Adobe survey, some 68% of marketers also said they measured customer levels of engagement on mobile and use over time, versus 81% of IT professionals. 69% of marketers and 84% of IT professionals also admitted that in their opinion, mobile apps were important to any marketing strategy. About 81% and 88%, respectively, said mobile websites were “extremely or very important.”

(As an aside, the Adobe research also showed that the travel and hospitality industry ranked search significantly higher than other industries for acquiring mobile app users.)

Interestingly, most respondents, including marketers said they believed that mobile-specific objectives or key performance indicators (KPI) directly supported a company’s overall business objectives.

Clearly, while the new research has only underlined the importance of mobile devices in a marketing campaign, what was unexpected was that even on matters of marketing, IT teams seemed to have a leg up over their marketing counterparts.

Over the last few years, research after research has shown that marketers have started putting mobile, apps as well as mobile-friendly websites, at the forefront of their integrated marketing strategy. We at Express Analytics have often talked of its growing importance on our own blog. So, while mobile marketing is almost about to dominate digital marketing efforts, mobile analytics, though, seems to be in the slower lane. The result of the Adobe research that puts marketers as trailing their IT colleagues in mobile analytics does come as a curveball. After all, lack of measurement of a campaign is akin to shooting in the dark, right?

We feel that marketers continue to be slow on the uptake where mobile analytics is concerned, because for a combination of reasons, one of them is trying to keep up with a plethora of technology and platforms that have not only exploded in the past few years but continue to get more sophisticated. For one, mobile marketing itself requires a high degree of specialization on part of the marketer, including the wherewithal to understand the metrics. For marketers, some of whom surprisingly still live in the SMS era, not moving on to apps or mobile-friendly sites means not fully utilizing the potential that mobile computing devices offer, thus depriving their clients or companies of the full revenue-earning potential of the medium.

Here are some pointers for this lot of digital marketers:

The mobile analytics market is broadly classified such as mobile advertising and marketing analytics, in-app behavioral analytics, application performance analytics, to name a few.

  • The global market is expected to grow from US $1.36 billion in 2015 to the US $4.12 billion by 2020, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 24.73%.
  • Marketers must understand that even Google and other search engines have started making mobile websites a priority, so they, too, need to fall in line.
  • According to one research, by 2018, American adults are expected to spend on average 3 hours and 23 minutes on non-voice mobile media.
  • Consumers are spending more and more time on mobile — and less time on everything else, according to eMarketer.
  • Consumer time spent on mobile is increasing while time spent with all other media is decreasing, according to research, underlining the fact that marketers need to prioritize mobile as the “first screen” for their campaigns.
  • From 2016 to 2017, time spent per day on mobile had reportedly increased by seven minutes, reaching a total of 3 hours and 15 minutes per day. In the same period, time spent on the desktop decreased by one minute and TV viewing decreased by five minutes. 

Clearly, digital marketers lag in mobile data analytics so how they can conquer this challenge? What can they specifically do to hurry up with their efforts in adopting mobile marketing analytics?

There are some interesting suggestions put forth by Mike McGuire, Research Vice President, Gartner for Marketing Leaders, that can work as a blueprint. Mike has proposed this 3-point formula:

  • Link mobile KPIs to business goals
  • Prioritize data access when selecting tools
  • Focus on customer experience improvement

Mobile measurement, he explains, can’t exist in a vacuum. Data from internal and external sources across channels is required to prove and improve the business and customer value of your mobile efforts. A complete mobile measurement framework needs to address the impact on the business and the customer as well as provide insight into operational and efficiency metrics for optimization.  One way to do this is to use KPIs that answer key mobile marketing questions such as what is mobile marketing’s impact on the business and the customer experience.

Those digital marketers who have been using analytics in their efforts need not worry about adapting to mobile data analytics. Since mobile is becoming the “first-screen”, all they need to do now is to study the metrics obtained from mobile computing devices first to address customer pain points and ensure users get the convenience they seek from mobile engagements by keeping an eye on operational mobile analytics.

Express Analytics provides mobile marketing solutions that can add data-power to your customer engagement and marketing strategies.


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