Our first xAd On Location event is fast approaching! This Thursday, May 16th, the xAd/Sweetery Treats Truck will pay a visit to 4 agencies, delivering free pastries and beverages to agency staff:
To participate, simply come equipped with your business card and enjoy! We'll be giving away prizes throughout the day to agency staff with the most "social spirit" so follow us, post pix, and tell your friends at @xAdInc and use #xAdOnLocation. With the help of your business cards, we'll draw our GRAND PRIZE winner!
One lucky agency guy or gal will win a $500 gift card from JetBlue!
So take a break from your busy day and come on down to the xAd/Sweetery Treats Truck this Thursday when it stops right in front of your building.
We'll see you there!
This is xAd's second year partnering with Nielsen on the Mobile Path to Purchase study - which will now cover 7 key industries crucial to mobile consumer activity in the space.
Mobile has is now rivaling PC as a primary mobile purchase research tool. In fact, of all the minutes spent shopping online, 1/3 comes from a mobile device. But of that time spent in mobile, it's almost evenly split between smartphone and tablet.
The research conducted attempts to answer a number of questions related to the mobile path to purchase.
If you take a look at the time when this live blog began publishing... it's early. But the good news it that Monica Ho and David Gill are presenting to a PACKED HOUSE! according to David, "Nothing wakes you up like a nice hot cup of data".
There is this traditional misconception that tablet is used at home and smartphone is on the go. But in fact categorically that can be absolutely untrue. For example, Gas & Convenience usage is primarily via smartphone and on-to-go.
Mobile is not this last mile media - in fact, it's often used at the start of the shopping process within a number of categories. This makes sense because it's often the easiest device to reach for. But that purchase related activity does continue throughout - especially within the Banking & Finance category.
Breaking down activity throughout all phases of the path to purchase, mobile purchase activity related to Insurance is done in the middle of the consideration process - this is common among categories that typically see a longer consideration process. Consumers often turn to mobile related to Retail toward the end of the purchase process.
Consumer intent is extremely evident when diving into the research as it translates to a wide variety of activities across verticals. Mobile shopping is not a blanket behavior with set activity at the start, middle, and during final purchase stage. You have to dive into the categories to really understand how consumer intent impacts activities related to those specific industries.
Aside from their pre-conceived ideas of what they were looking to achieve in using their mobile device, immediacy of intent is a major factor in mobile purchase activity. 60% of mobile users were looking to convert within the day. Diving deeper into the categories, Banking & Finance users are looking to purchase immediately and often via-device, a similar level of immediacy is present of course for Gas & Convenience. Mobile users interacting with Retail have a longer intent time line - 27% looking to convert within a day, and 26% within a month. Insurance see more intent within a month's time.
Location of course is another major impact on the mobile path to purchase. Regardless of where mobile consumers were leveraging their device. 1 out of 3 smartphone users, and 1 out of 4 tablet users leverage their devices as a location-related directory, searching for map & driving directions, a phone number, etc.
But location is not just for businesses with brick & mortar. Location ads relevance and context to ad targeting and ad creative that drives greater overall mobile consumer engagement.
Mobile conversions are happening both on and offline. A big mistake marketers make is assuming that just because they are running a mobile advertisement that all their consumers should and will finalize their purchase immediatly in-device. But mobile does in fact drive a great deal of purchase activity offline at brick & mortart, and even on desktop - depending on the category, as the time line of their path to purchase can greatly vary.
Interested in learning more?
to download the entire presentation!
xAd VP of Sales, Chad Hickey was joined by a panel of some of the most active brands and agencies in mobile today.
Karen Soots - VP, Media Services, Bloomin' Brands
Paul Cowman - Media Supervisor, Universal McCann
Brad LaMendola - Digital Supervisor, Carat
David Calikins - Integrated Marketing & Media Leader, Diageo
These brands and agencies are intimately familiar with the power of mobile-location and are working with xAd to develop custom location-targeting strategies for their brands and clients. Below are highlights from the panel conversations!
CHAD: Without brick and mortar locations, how do you target your mobile audiences?
DC: It's all about data and measurement - There is a ton to get through in order to understand who we our audience is and what they are most engaged with. Then it's about measurement and
CHAD: Can you talk a bit about how you evangelize mobile internally and the challenges you've come up against?
DC:Understanding what mobile can and cannot do is important, in order to set appropriate expectations, and from there understanding the vision of how it can work for your business. It's a important to understand how mobile plays into the whole story of marketing.
KS: You have to have a mult-media approach to your marketing that includes mobile. They are never independant of each other. We are always asking if we've effectively gotten our point accross? Have we reached our core customers?
CHAD: How do you really evaluate location-enabled inventory?
PC: The biggest thing we struggle with is what data sources are really working best for us. Full transparency is key. It's always going to be a constant struggle to understand what is working most effectively as the space is always changing, so it's just important to stay on top of what's available.
BL: Data is really everything to me. Not wasting impressions and understanding how we can best zero in on our audience when and where they are is essential. We know that our audience is interested and exists within certain key channels, whether it be sports, health & fitness, etc. so it's about staying relevant to their mobile interests as well.
DC: When it comes to scale, we look at mobile in two different layers. 1) as part of a brand awareness/brand building strategy which is more general and broad, and 2) a hyper-local layer that really compliments this broad approach with a relevant, local conversation.
CHAD: Can you talk about creative and the location experience and how they work well together?
DC: one of the things we found most interesting in the last few months was two variations in creative we recently executed - 1) was more informative - included the location and information as to where you can purchase Captain Morgans spirits 2) Then a more inspirational creative piece that had a new reciepe to try with Captain Morgans. And the results were a little surprising to us. We found that the map and directions element did not perform as well as the inspirational piece. This is mostly likely due to the fact that consumers know where they can get Captain Morgans, either at their local bar or spirit retailer, but it was the ideas related to new ways to include Captain Morgans in your happy hour, etc. that was most interesting to the consumers.
KS: When a consumer is looking for a restaurant, it's a functional need. A planned occassion like a birthday, or holiday, you're not always looking for that on mobile as you're planning way in advance. But the urgency of users that use mobile to find a restaurnt they want the info they need now! It can't be 15 clicks away from the menu, directions, etc. So our focus is ease of navigation and allowing the users to get in, out, and to our locations.
CHAD: is there anything else you'd like to see as mobile moves forward?
PC: I'd love to see mobile as more of a story telling vehicle
BL: I'd like to see it used as an enhancement to a shopper's experience
DC: I'm most intersted in distance, and how valuable the differences in distance are by brand, market, etc. as far as user engagement. It illustrates an important story on the value of what we are providing them via mobile advertising, etc.
CHAD: How do you rank the value of mobile as opposed to other media channels you leverage?
KS: Because the messages are so specific to each medium - whether broad based, or more targeted, it's hard to understand which performs best. But being able to location target is an important differentiator available in mobile. Mobile is also more nimble and allows us to competitively target based on real-time user activity which is of course unavailable in other mediums.
PC: We are always working closely with our publishers and media partners to achieve better scale.
CHAD: What is the most effective way to measur emobile performance?
BL: One of the limitations I see is the comparison to Online Display success vs. local mobile success. When you look at mobile-location there is far more you can do with that medium overall. Lift in sales is always the most important metric guiding our implementation
DC: The quantitative stuff will always be important, but i
PC: In the short term, we do look at lift in local engagement. On a long-term basis we look at what are we doing on behalf of the brand that shows we've affected their brand in a positive way.
DC: We don't really focus on one quantitive variable, CPM, CPC, etc. At the end of the day it's a mix of different variables that guide our success metrics and ultimately decisions
CHAD: Can you touch on instances where moblie implementation DIDN'T work?
BL: A lot of planners check off a mobile box, without understanding WHY. Understanding the campaign assest the brand has to offer and how that can translate into mobile is the most important part of a strategy. Customers have high standards and they will judge brand on what it has to offer in the space. For me the most important aspect a brand can offer a consumer is location.
PC: One aspect of what we do is very media based, another is extremely analytical and they look at what is going on in the marketplace to ensure what we are spending is the right investment
CHAD: If someone was to come up to you after this session and say what is the reality of mobile-location?
DC: We're still in the infancy here. and the more we don't share with each other, the more we hurt each other. It's just important to have the proper partners, vendors, data, KPIs, and have realistic conversations with senior management. mobile to me is a much more surgical tool than TV, etc.
KS: You have to be willing to understand what was wrong with what you did and try again. Take a chance, and take a different approach and be open to the ideas around you.
PC: Mobile advertising IS HERE. It would be foolish if we thought it was going to go away. It's important to be educated and understand the right vendors to work with.
BL: Each medium has it's own unique selling power. but mobile is the only medium where you can speak to consumers as granularly as a city block, and help guide them purchase decisions.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: When you look for vendors, how do you really vet the opportunities?
BL: We always vet for transparency and an understanding the data they have available as far as targeting based on location. As new technologies emerge, it's an ongoing process but one we are fully invested in.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: How do you scale the ability to localize content?
DC: our database is so overwhelming it takes a lot of elbow grease to get into it.
PC: We've been leaning a lot on our partners for that. Dynamic messaging capabilities allow us to achieve that scale with a more localized conversation. We try and keep things simple, just changing out a few variables here and there where relevant - and that can create a seemless user experience relevant to each locale. Total understanding of it all may be a bit further out, but working with xAd and other partners has really helped us achieve that scale at an early stage.
REALLY GREAT conversations today everyone! Thanks for packing the house!
Much more to come tomorrow during xAd's next session at 9:15 AM where VP of Marketing, Monica Ho, and Nielsen's VP of Emerging Media, David Gill will present the findings from this year's Mobile Path to Purchase study!
If reading this has just reminded you of the significance of this weekend... you're definitely a procrastinator.
(Pssst. It's Mother's Day!)
But never fear! You're not alone. The advent of mobile shopping has revealed a consumer base that is ready, willing and able to buy at the very last minute. Whether it's flowers, cupcakes, or Victoria's Secret, brands and businesses looking to take reach and engage Mother's Day shoppers may be best served by focusing greater attention on the small window of opportunity opened by the holiday's procrastinators.
Not convinced mobile is the place to reach them?
With so many devices in our arsenal these days, purchases are made via smartphone, on PC, and even in-person - but mobile's role in the research and decision making process is significant. A soon to be released xAd/Nielsen study found that 1/3 of all retail activity comes from mobile devices. ONE-THIRD!
to download the infograph and learn more about how you can reach Mother's Day Shoppers