Researching the Mobile Marketing Opportunity

Mobile marketing is a case in point: A forthcoming Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) survey of U.S. advertisers and agencies shows strong confidence in mobile marketing’s reach and effectiveness — so much so that they plan to increase their spending 124 percent, to more than $5.4 billion by the end of 2011. This projected increase reflects advertiser and agency plans to shift their budgets out of media such as print and outdoor advertising and into the mobile channel.

There are two sure signs when an industry has evolved from a new niche to a mainstream power. First, companies shift big portions of their budget into the market and, second, there’s a growing body of independent research that sizes the impact of that spending and provides insights into emerging opportunities.

Mobile marketing is a case in point: A forthcoming Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) survey of U.S. advertisers and agencies shows strong confidence in mobile marketing’s reach and effectiveness — so much so that they plan to increase their spending 124 percent to more than $5.4 billion by the end of 2011. This projected increase reflects advertiser and agency plans to shift their budgets out of media such as print and outdoor advertising and into the mobile channel.

It’s easier for brands and agencies to justify those dramatic increases and strategy shifts when they have access to independent, primary analytics showing consumer interest in and adoption of mobile services. Take location-based advertising, for example. An April 2010 survey conducted by the MMA and one of its official research partners, Luth Research, found that nearly one in four U.S. adult consumers uses mobile location services, with usage highest among Apple iPhone owners.

One of that survey’s key takeaways: nearly half of those who noticed any ads while using location-based services took at least some action, indicating that consumers respond well to ads via location-based services. That’s the kind of actionable intelligence that brands and agencies need to make the most of the mobile channel.

Partnerships are key
To meet the industry’s need for qualitative and quantitative analytics, the MMA has established a Research Partner Program involving
several leading research firms around the world:

  • Luth Research and its online panel, SurveySavvy, supports MMA’s Mobile Consumer Briefing series in the U.S., a survey of more than 1,000 U.S. adult mobile consumers that reveals current trends. For example, the July 2010 MMA Mobile Consumer Briefing found that a third of mobile consumers would be more likely to respond to an ad in any media if it offered them the option of a mobile response.

  • Lightspeed Research is the official partner of MMA’s Mobile Consumer Briefing series in three critical European markets: France, Germany and the U.K. The MMA’s April 2010 report showed that text messaging is now among the most popular means for making charitable donations in these major Western European countries.

  • Kinesis Survey Technologies, which is a key contributor to the MMA Global Research Panel, the industry’s first research capability that provides brands and agencies with deep, actionable insights into marketers’ integrated mobile campaigns, objectives and outcomes.

  • Synovate, whose surveys are the basis for the MMA’s annual “Mobile Attitude & Usage Study” series, will be releasing its 2010 study of the U.S. mobile market in November of this year.

  • Advertising Database, a key contributor to the MMA’s “View from Madison Avenue 2010: How American brands and agencies are using and spending on mobile,” a survey that will be released this August.

  • The Association of National Advertisers (ANA), whose membership includes 400 companies with 9,000 brands that collectively spend over $250 billion in marketing communications and advertising. The MMA and ANA currently are conducting a joint study into how brands are using the mobile channel for advertising and marketing, and the effectiveness of those strategies.

“Research firms around the world increasingly approach the MMA to offer their services to our members,” says Peter A. Johnson, the MMA’s vice president of market intelligence and strategy. “That’s a testimony both to the excitement and energy around the mobile channel and the perception of the MMA as the global source for actionable insights into this market.”

MMA research highlights are publicly available in MMA press releases and at our events, such as the Mobile Marketing Forum series. However, each study’s full, deep-dive results are available only to MMA members and at no additional cost, regardless of membership level.

Interested? Visit http://mmaglobal.com/research for more details.