‘Automated mobile marketing is the next big thing', says Mediacom global mobile chief

Marketers need to understand the fundamental differences between mobile marketing automation and web marketing automation needed to provide a great experience across all touchpoints, Mediacom’s head of mobile Ben Phillips has said.

Advertisers have been pushing automated content to mobile devices for some time but their efforts have been hampered by an unclear view of how people switch between platforms. As push notifications and proximity triggers become more prevalent in the marketer’s arsenal, so to will a form of mobile automated marketing that goes beyond just a mobile app.

Mobile is no longer just the phone, warned Phillips, and brands should take into “consideration all that is not tethered to a desk”. Advertisers enjoying the most success are the ones that have designed their creative mobile first and “appreciate how their audience chooses to engage with them and provides the correct response”.

For example, in retail, instead of pushing ads to shoppers as they pass by an aisle, why not connect the experience with CRM and personalise the ads with even more context.

Speaking to The Drum as one the judges for 2015’s Mobile on Marketing Awards (MOMA), Phillips added: “Creativity will lead the way [in automated mobile marketing as many brands start to build 'mobile first' content that is relevant to the consumer regardless of point of engagement,” he added. “Automated mobile marketing will enable deeper CRM learnings and processes that lead brands to a more personal one-to-one dialogue with their consumers.”

This personalised dialogue with customers cannot happen without audience data.

“The race this year will be to obtain a persistent tracking identifier for an individual across platforms,” predicted Phillips. “By this I don’t just mean mobile and desktop, we need to be able to verify individuals against wearable devices, a smart TV a connected car and internet of things.”

But brands are not yet doing enough to understand the breadth of the mobile spectrum and their agencies need to work harder at paving the way. It is why Mediacom is plotting similar partnerships to the one it has with advertising technology platform Celtra, which now means it can create rich media ad units for both desktop and mobile in Dublin, for example, and have the rest of the network access the creative to repurpose on a local level quickly and efficiently.

“I believe [brands] aren’t doing enough because they aren’t being directed, taught or educated in the right way,” said Phillips. “Our industry will begin to consolidate and roll up into digital within the next year. The 'systems' lead thinking approach will win out as it becomes ever more apparent that mobile sits in every marketing and advertising discipline and not as a siloed specialist function.”

Advertisers that will enjoy the most success in the shifting mobile space will be those that remember the consumer defines the mobile strategy. The notion will be on Phillips’ mind as he judges the entrants to this year’s MOMA’s, which close for entries today (20 February).

The MOMA’s, sponsored by Weve and Mapp Media, is now open for entries and looks to celebrate the most effective and innovative work carried out in the mobile industry. More information on The Drum MOMA Awards can be found on the dedicated website.