Mobile Set to Become Most Dominant Medium: AKQA Exec

SAN FRANCISCO – An AKQA executive at ad:tech said that mobile is set to become the most dominant media that marketers and consumers have ever known with more users turning to the channel to search, play, shop and connect.

During the “Mobile Marketing: Understanding the Wireless Future” session, the executive discussed the evolution of mobile and the impact that it will have on marketers and consumers this year. Consumers are increasingly turning to their mobile devices to not only interact with brands, but also to search and rate products.

“We’re now at a stage where we have to, as advertisers, relearn how to approach how we talk to our consumers, how we use mobile in smart ways and how we connect brands to the actual customers,” said Tina Unterlaender, account director at AKQA Mobile, San Francisco.

“Mobile phones were initially created for people to speak to one another – one conversation at a time – and now we’re entering a stage of perpetual change,” she said. “We’re trying to keep up with what’s actually going on and how we can make use of the smart device.

“People are doing billions of things on their mobile devices.”

According to Ms. Unterlaender, there are four macro mobile trends – search, rate, buy and report.

With search, consumers are buying, comparing, and checking prices and availability on products.

Ratings provides consumers with a peer-driven choice and crowd decisions.

Another trend, buying, shows that consumers are making more purchase decisions on mobile.

Finally, report shows how consumers are continually checking into places and letting others know where they are and what they are doing.

“People are using mobile devices to report on actual live events,” Ms. Unterlaender said. “There’s also this check-in craze.

“Who wants everyone to know where I am at all times?” she said. “Apparently lots of people.

“Imagine how we have changed what was so close and dear to us – our privacy and personal. We have become much more open to share a lot of our things.”

All about mobile
According to Ms. Unterlaender, mobile applications enable consumers to express, distribute and quantify their opinions like never before.

In addition, mobile helps consumers make their research more precise and efficient.

Ms. Unterlaender also believes that new technologies such as mobile apps and retail adoption will allow consumers to carry their credit, gym membership and grocery club cards simply in their smartphone.

“Most massively popular mobile apps have been either focusing on entertainment, news, weather and social networks,” Ms. Unterlaender. “That’s just the beginning.

“Just imagine what will happen – there will be a true exponential increase,” she said. “It took the Web 10 years to actually grow from one hour time spent per day to two hours spent today.

“With mobile, you can only imagine how much faster we will get to that point in less time.”

Another key trend emerging are tablets – especially Apple’s iPad.

Ms. Unterlaender said that devices such as the iPad are increasingly changing and being updated with new features and more consumers are switching and updating their devices today than they did years ago.

“It has been barely a year since the iPad launched and there’s a second iPad that is better and has better features,” Ms. Unterlaender said. “We’re increasing with that.

“More consumers are getting rid of feature phones and moving into the smartphone space,” she said.

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