How to approach Mobile Marketing Strategy as a CMO?

Let me tell you something, if you are a CMO who is creating the mobile strategy for the first time, then only god can help you.

Guess what, the fault is not yours. Mobile marketing space has become increasingly complex and confusing for even the best of digital professionals and building an integrated mobile marketing approach for the company is no child’s play.

As a CMO, the most important thing to do before building your mobile marketing framework, is to get the right facts on table so as to see the future strategy in the right perspective.

Here’s how a CMO can approach his mobile marketing strategy:

Mobile Marketing Strategy Framework

Curate the right Mobile Trends

Mobile is one of the hottest topics in the digital parlance, and it would continue to remain critical until AI takes over. Every platform owner (like Google & Facebook) or market research agencies (like KPMG & Nielsen) offer their biased point of views w.r.t mobile strategies.

The idea should be to hand pick the most relevant trends that suits your nature of business.

Also see : Mobile Marketing – A quick guide for chief marketing officer and digital agencies

Defining Consumer Journey in Mobile

Consumer Journey in Mobile

Consumer Journey in Mobile


The consumer journey of various categories can be different but what matters for a CMO is to ascertain the touch points that needs mobile first makeover and optimisation. Once you define your brand’s consumer journey in the digital space, keeping in mind the mobile trends, you must map your mobile objectives in that journey.

Deciding the platforms

Once the CMO has identified the mobile objectives, choosing the platforms would be an easy deal. But there are times when marketing teams fall in the trap of choosing between what adds value vs what adds vanity? For e.g. B2B business need not create a consume facing app just because apps are the flavour of the day.

Also read: How to choose between Mobile App vs Mobile WAP 

Choosing Marketing Channels

A combination of your chosen platforms and your end marketing objectives would further help in defining your mobile marketing channels. If you have taken the App route, you have to build an acquisition / App download strategy followed by an App usage strategy.

Most of the performance marketing companies or affiliates do not bother about the app usage. App usability is not even there as the last metric.

As a CMO, you must see it at all times that your digital agency and affiliates are not compromising on the user targeting so that the usage data does not go too diagonal.

If the focus is your responsive website, you must create a mobile first marketing plan across all channels including search, display & social.

Creating Mobile Content

Your brand’s content must resonate with your audience mobile usage. If the trends are in favour of social media content, you must create more liquid or shareable content to increase your organic reach and engagements.

Choosing your Mobile SEO keywords is perhaps the most difficult exercise and needs more intricate planning over a period of time. You have to depend a lot on your google analytics organic data for building the roadmap for Mobile SEO.

Short form video content is must-have for social ads as it increases your advertising ROI. ( Read : What type of content should you create? )



4 Mobile Marketing Strategies that would actually work in 2017

Year 2015, was perhaps the most important year in the mobile marketing industry, an year when mobile devices officially ended the 2 decade long dominance by desktops.

People around the globe settled down to a new “mobile way of life”.

Mobile is primary digital device for all demography segments

Source: BCG Center

Data from BCG study calling out loud and clear, that mobile devices are the primary digital device of all age and demography segments.

Over 53% of tier 1,2 & 3 use mobile as their primary device.

Google also acknowledged this fact in one of their PR releases pertaining to mobile vs desktop searches. Google’s search chief Amit Singhal said for the first time, more Google searches were completed on mobile devices than desktop computers.

All of this point us (the advertisers and marketers) in one single direction. We can, no longer continue to ignore mobile as a key channel in the marketing mix. However, there are several challenges (especially for the small & medium advertisers) when it comes to using Mobile effectively as a marketing channel.

Here are few mobile marketing tactics which are most logical and almost hygiene to make your digital marketing work in 2016.

#1 Mobile Marketing is most Social than ever before

Mobile vs Social Media in 2016

Source: WARC Asial Survey, 2015

77% of the marketers (also identified as one of the 2016 digital marketing trend in my previous blog post) said that mobile is used most frequently with paid social media marketing.

This data is also in sync with the the below numbers shared by Facebook Audience Insights, which says 122 Mn out of 132 Mn people access Facebook through  Mobile.

Facebook India Audience Data 2015-16

Facebook India Audience Data 2015-16

Clearly, this shows that your social strategy should go through a “Mobile First” prism in 2016. What that means really is when you design your social content or when you create your paid social marketing plan, do skew it more towards mobile audience.

#2 Mobile Marketing is more about native content and less about advertising

Mobile Content vs Mobile Advertising - Trends 2016

Source: WARC-MMA Survey Report, 2015

The current trend might be in favour (almost tilted) of paid social advertising as the key mobile tactic, but this will change soon and the trend is already visible. According to the WARC-MMA survey, mobile display advertising would lose its share by 2020 to Mobile Content (or native advertising).

Also Read : Reasons Why Mobile Native Advertising Beats Desktop Native Advertising 

Apple has already allowed ad blocker apps to run on its safari browser.  Though iPhone’s overall market share is limited, but this would still cause significance dent in the overall mobile display pie.

#3 Give your website a “Mobile First” makeover

Regardless of the type or stage of the brand, having a unique mobile first experience is something which would become a de-facto standard from here-on.

More so after the Mobilegedden update by Google.

In order to take better decision on your mobile first approach, also read “Mobile Web vs Mobile App

Responsive website might be thing of the past for many digital first brands in 2016 as they continue to chase and build deeper consumer experience using Mobile First Strategies.

#4 In-App would grow but Mobile Searches would remain the key performing channel

With the growing popularity of mobile apps, to which a lot of digital pundits would say it offers a superior user experience than conventional websites, start-ups tilted (almost shifted) their product and business models towards the app at the expense of desktop and mobile websites.

To add to this, many investors regarded the number of app downloads as one of the indicators of a start-up’s performance. Entrepreneurs and marketing heads rushed to blindly maximise their app downloads. Since then, tonnes of app marketing companies opened shop in Bangalore and Mumbai.

Soon, however, it was evident that they didn’t necessarily result in high growth.

Now, as apps lose their novelty and vanity both, and as smartphone users uninstall apps to clear up memory (uninstall rates are as high as 90% in some cases), these companies are revisiting their mobile web strategies.

The winner? Google, which retains its dominance of online ad spending.

Hence, digital brands should get a sharp focus on getting their mobile keywords strategy in 2016. Yes, there is a difference of “intent & location relevance” in the audience search list.

Is your Brand actually ready for Mobile?

It is no rocket science to say that in the last one decade, technology has changed a lot of things around us and in effect about us. With mobile (or mobility) being the most critical catalyst in this ultra sonic evolutionary shift in human behavior, there are few aspects of this evolution worth talking about.

First, Mobile, which was an object of desire till a decade ago, suddenly became the oxygen for the entire human race which continues to find ways (in the form of apps) to increase their dependency on it.

Today, from the most trivial and mundane tasks to the most advanced events are initiated, controlled & monitored by mobile devices.

Having said that, instead of restricting, the 4.5 inch (and now continuously increasing) screen size has opened the imagination of millions around the globe. Thanks to Apple iOS & Google Android who allowed the age old graphic designers to re-invent themselves into a UI/UX specialist.

App developers added more fuel to this fire by making the most of various possibilities offered by Android & iOS platforms and flooding the app stores with millions of apps.

In a world, where people’s life depending so much on connectivity and mobility, how can Advertising be left behind? But unfortunately, the ad world did not evaluated the applicability, marketing viability and other connected pros and cons of the medium before starting to weave advertising around it. After all, the ever increasing number of mobile devices were adding more “premium” eye balls to their excel sheets (in effect more marketing dollars) at a never seen before pace in the advertising history.

However, it is logical to follow the eye balls, the ground work was missing before going bullish on the advertising part. In many ways, mobile has not gone through a proper curve of evolution, purely from Advertising standpoint. There were too many things happening in too little time duration in the name of innovation. Advertisers were only listening to newer terminology in every Adtech or Digital Media seminar which was making it increasingly difficult to define any strategy for the short term.

On one side App developer and advertising community were pushing the OEMs to increase screen sizes of their devices, due to which 5.5-6 inch phablets are now on their way to become a de-facto in the smartphone world.

There was little change from an audience experience standpoint which becomes the party spoiler in Mobile Advertising.

Brands are not responsive to Responsive Web

#Mobilegeddon - Google goes strict on experience on mobile browsers

In its last major search algorithmic change aka “Mobilegeddon”, Google made it absolutely crystal clear that they are serious about delivering great reader experience on the mobile browsers. The change was more of a warning to brands and corporates who’ve not spent enough energies in making their websites responsive.  (Read : Google will punish you if you don’t have a mobile website )

To check if your website is mobile responsive, visit Google’s Mobile Friendly Test Tool.

Akamai report on responsive web

In a post outlining his research, Akamai’s Guy Podjarny presented the information that Barry expressed hope about getting from Google. Akamai’s figures showed that just 18.7% of a list of 10,000 top-tier web sites is responsive. The percentage decreases in proportion to the traffic the site gets.

When it comes to the top 100 sites analysed, only 11.8% of these sites use responsive web design.


Brian Klais of Pure Oxygen Labs did a similar analysis in 2013 with the Fortune 100, and found that only 11% of them are responsive. That number has likely increased in two years, given the rate at which webmaster have been adopting responsive web design.

Although adoption in practice isn’t nearly as high as Google’s unscientific survey would suggest, responsive sites are growing quickly, to the point where they are now catching up with separate URLs as the dominant mobile site configuration method.

site type on mobile

Sites with separate URLs for mobile and desktop (“Mdot”) were found 21% of the time in Akamai’s study, and responsive web design (“RWD”) was right behind with 17% of the total. A specific breakdown of dynamic serving and not-mobile-optimized wasn’t provided — together they with totalled 62%.

Despite such strict measures by Google in their webmaster algorithm, the ratio of Responsive Websites have not gone up significantly.

Clearly, using mobile advertising in your marketing mix is not a viable option till you are delivering 100% responsive experience on your brand’s landing page / corporate website.

5 digital marketing tips for every business

As the new year approaches each year, many of us start thinking of resolutions. It can actually feel uplifting to begin a new plan such as joining a gym to get fit, writing one page a day for the next bestseller novel, or more prosaically, keeping up with your inbox.

I am sure some of you also make resolutions in your careers & business as well and hopefully by now you might have seen hundreds of these lists, most of which are little difficult to implement or follow in your daily routine.

Here are five simple digital marketing tips that you can follow, without too much added cost or inconvenience, that will nevertheless make a big, positive difference:

  1. Focus on your loyal customers in your social media campaigns. Nothing is more important than making your past & present customers feel special. They are your biggest ally in the war against your competition. So create a separate content plan around your loyal fans. Taking the time to do this will only boost your customer loyalty, though. Schedule just a few minutes each week to check comments and social media posts and to offer a quick response.
  2. Develop your mobile first strategy & marketing plan for all your campaigns. Keep a note of your major product launches and brief your mobile vendors in advance. Make sure all your landing pages are responsive and the content looks super sexy on all devices.
  3. Spend resources & energy in building your Digital Intelligence (big data) and not just analytics. If you are planning to shift more spends into digital marketing, make sure you allocate a part of that money towards capturing & monitoring your customer & audience behavioural data.
  4. Whether you are a B2B or B2C brand, create a comprehensive content calendar in advance. Build themes around major shopping seasons, events, festivals, holidays etc. if your customer is direct consumer. If you are a B2B brand, create your content calendar around your brand & product campaigns, major PR initiatives, corporate events etc.
  5. Make your social marketing plan focus more towards engaging with bloggers & communities and not just your own Twitter & Facebook pages. It is difficult to find these bloggers and communities, but that’s where you would get your loyal customers from and it is absolutely vital for the organic traffic on your website.

Mobile first approach is now a must for brands

There has been a constant debate around the role of mobile in the present digital ecosystem.
While on one side, few digital & social media enthusiast are completely tilting their opinion towards use of mobile applications and rich media, another section is extremely bullish towards mobile video & its capabilities in taking the brand message to the end consumer.

In the meantime, Mobile has already crossed the stage where it was just a part of those endless client-agency brief meetings. Today it has the power to justify the status of “Next big mass medium” by virtue of the sheer numbers it possess.

Mobile internet adoption is growing at a faster rate than the adoption of radio, internet and television. By 2015, nearly two-thirds of all “online” advertising will be served up by a mobile device.

According to latest comScore reports, out of 234 million mobile user base of Age 13+ in the United States, 22% accesses videos on mobile & over 11% watches TV on their mobile device.

Almost 22% of those with HHI $50K+ accesses the video content through their mobile. These figures may look small compared to overall size of the market but from a digital consumption point of view, these are definitely huge & still going strong exponentially.

While mobile is a great complement for conventional brand marketing, mobile display & rich media are greater for direct response & engagement. Perhaps the answer lies in the way any advertiser would be using mobile videos in their digital media mix.

Conventionally, most of the digital agencies are recommending standard run of the mill pre-rolls to all their clients, just to keep their client’s investments safe & to give better ROI for the brand. On one side it may be growing the mobile video category, but it is shrinking the rest of the mobile by limiting the possibilities & typecasting the medium in the eye of the marketeer.

Lets find out how various marketeers are using Mobile currently as a part of their overall marketing efforts.

Mobile Media Marketing Tactics used by Brands & Marketers

Marketers are focusing on mobile as another messaging channel, and mostly ignoring its potential as a medium through which to build deeper customer relationships. The beauty of  mobile is not just taking the brand message & delivering it to a wider targeted audience, but it is actually adding another layer of engagement with the customer before, during & after the point of purchase.

Mobile media intelligene, if effectively used, can peel off deep complex layers of human behavior when exposed to certain communication. Today, Mobile as a device allows a user to touch & engage with a brand message in a certain space & time. The information, if used for segmentation of brand audience can help create rich audience experience over time.

Jason Spero from Google talks about the mobile revolution in the usage of devices that has happened over time. He explains the importance of mobile and how to use mobile to connect with your already engaged consumers.

The global marketers surveyed by Marketing Charts do see the potential for mobile as a relationship-building channel, even if they haven’t yet fully embraced it in such a way. 55% cited mobile’s accessibility and always-on nature as a critical benefit, and about half feel that mobile will play a role in influencing customer interactions through its ability to provide more relevant and personalised experiences. This further proves that what’s holding marketers back are immature irrational & inexplicable strategies and a lack of talent to produce the right content.

Digital Case Study : 5 best mobile campaigns of 2012

Awards in the media fraternity is always an area of concern for me due to their authenticity & quality of entries making it to the top which further opens a brand new Pandora box of questions for all enthusiasts.

What’s the credibility of the entries?
Is the shortlisting process transparent enough? Ideally I Would love to have this process democratic in nature. Most of these campaigns are followed by who’s who of the advertising world be it Account Planners, Brand Managers, Marketing Managers, Copywriters, Business owners, start ups, digital enthusiasts etc.

But there are few forums that genuinely brings the quality on top, EMMA for instance is one platform which has brought impressive content as a whole.

The entries tend to be skewed towards the UK and Western Europe. The distinguishing feature of these awards is the focus on campaign effectiveness. That means
the final winning entries have won because they actually delivered ROI metric for their clients, not just because the creative looked fancy from outside.

This year’s final entries opens up your mind as a digital marketeer purely because of the way they have tried to engage with the customer.

And the winners are..

1. Most Effective Mobile Campaigns for Direct Response

Winner : Unilever/Rabarba for Cornetto ‘My Loooove’ 2012 Summer Campaign

Summary : Moving away from their annual tactical campaign “Buy 1 Get 1 Free”, brand asked Consumers who bought promotional ‘Cornetto in Love’ and ‘Cornetto
Disc’ packs could text in a code printed on the packaging to receive 120 minutes of free airtime. When they did so, they received an automated call back
asking them to express their love for the brand by shouting “My Loooove!” for as long as they could, replicating the theme of the brand’s summer TV campaign.
The best efforts won a Cornetto teddy bear.

Results: In addition to increased sales, the campaign generated 1.4m participations in the first two months, including 300,000 IVR responses.

Watch the video.

2. Most Effective Mobile Sites

Winner: Pizza Hut/bemoko for Pizza Hut delivery mobile site

Summary: In order to build greater reach into their campaigns, Pizza Hut opted for a mobile site, rather than an app. The site integrates with Pizza Hut’s back-office systems, and renders to all devices, but with a user experience tailored to each device. The mobile site offers all the functionality of the desktop site. A User Console enables Pizza Hut to add and remove offers and new products.

Results: By the end of the first week after going live, the site accounted for 10 per cent of all online orders, with orders on mobile increasing by 60 per cent over the next two weeks.

Read complete case study here.

3. Most Effective Mobile Campaigns through Mobile Coupons

Winner: McDonald’s/MobileBits for McDonald’s Euro 2012 Campaign

Summary: Sponsorship of the Euro 2012 football tournament, McDonald’s and its agency MobileBits used the SAMY4ME Mobile Mall app to offer McDonald’s vouchers and coupons. To redeem an offer, consumers simply had to click on the coupon within the app and show it to the McDonald’s cashier for redemption at the in-store POS

Samy-McDonalds-EURO2012 Video from MobileBits on Vimeo.

4. Most Effective Mobile Campaigns in Advertising

Winner: Nokia/YOC for Nokia Lumia 800 Mystery Ad.

Summary: Surfing the mobile web, the user is surprised by a sudden appearance of the Windows Phone interface on their iOS or Android device – a surreal experience. Nokia presents a well designed, well crafted rich media mobile ad demonstrating the features of its new Lumia 800. Clicking on the ad, the user is led to a landing page providing a very smooth, native-app-like user experience, allowing the user to look at a slide-show picture gallery presenting the new Nokia Lumia 800 features, get further information on the phone’s functions, browse through available accessories and even kick back and enjoy the embedded video. With the creative concept of delivering an interface of a completely different operating system to an iPhone or Android device, an unreal and surprising experience is guaranteed.

Results: with a CTR of 29.7 percent the impact of the campaign is way above average suggesting that it has a similarly high impact on awareness and image indicators.

5. Most Effective Mobile Campaigns for charity

Winner: Vodafone for the JustTextGiving

Summary: JustTextGiving was set up by Vodafone, the Vodafone Foundation and JustGiving, enabling anyone to donate by text to individual fundraisers – and Britain’s 184,000 charities via a unique textcode.

Results: more than 16,000 charities and over 40,000 individuals had signed up to JustTextGiving, raising more than £4m for their respective causes.