I quite like this provocative sausage dog picture because it forces marketers to think differently about responsive web design (RWD). More often than not, marketers scale content down to fit a smaller screen; because they then claim that they use RWD and have some mobile apps, they think they have checked the mobile box. In fact, RWD was by far the most common tactic that marketers were using or planning to use in 2015: Only 9% of marketers we surveyed are not planning to use it. When fully implemented, RWD can improve the user experience, but more often than not, it’s implemented as a quick fix to the problem of multiple screen sizes. It often prevents marketers from thinking about the need to contextualize offerings for different devices. Customers do not necessarily want the same content across all their screens. However, a scarily high percentage of marketers we surveyed — 47% — admit their mobile services are primarily a scaled-down version of their PC services. In short:
- Marketers misuse mobile marketing tactics. B2C marketers often focus too much on piloting the latest mobile shiny objects and, unfortunately, do not invest enough in adapting to mobile experiences’ core touchpoints — like email or search — that most consumers use to engage with brands.
- Use mobile to transform brand experiences. Too few marketers think of mobile as an opportunity to transform the brand experience. To really differentiate themselves, they should develop mobile-unique interactions delivering visible value with apps, messaging, and online-to-offline tactics.
- Insights and constant optimization are key to unlocking mobile’s full potential. To rethink how mobile could transform the customer journey, marketers should use ethnographic research and journey maps and have a more holistic vision of how their customers behave by leveraging contextual data. Testing and learning will not be enough — the use of optimization techniques must be systematic.
For clients willing to better understand how their peers are using various mobile tactics, access our new report of the mobile marketing playbook: The State of Mobile Marketer Tactics: 2016.