Mobile Marketing growth surges in India but full potential not yet realized, notes Warc-MMA study

23 Sep,2015

By A Correspondent


The latest wave of research, conducted by Warc in association with The Mobile Marketing Association (MMA), found that 75 per cent of Indian marketers are assigning 10 per cent or less of their budgets to mobile [compared to 66 per cent of APAC marketers]. However, majority of Indian marketers expect budgets to rise by 25 per cent this year and by 51-99 per cent in 2020.


While marketers appreciate the importance of the mobile channel in India, full potential of mobile advertising is still to be realised. The state of the industry reveals that around 47 per cent audience believe that mobile as a marketing channel is effective and that it will benefit the brands. So education becomes extremely crucial at this stage. Indian advertisers are far more likely to have a formal mobile strategy for their brand. Findings also showed Location-based marketing is seen as the most important mobile technology today, and will remain so in 2020. It’s expected to rise from 84 to 88 per cent by 2020. The Telecom sector is thought to be the most innovative in India at present, with 39 per cent of respondents deeming it such. Retail closely follows with 38 per cent of the vote.


The results derived from the Warc MMA Asia Report concluded that Multi-screening is recognised as the most significant consumer trend in India, along with mobile payments and streaming video. Consumer behaviour in India with regards to mobile usage is dramatic with 68 per cent of consumers opting for multi screening. With regards to Mobile Marketing, content has become the king with most marketers focussing on content, search and app development.


“It’s clear from the study that there is still a long way to go before brands and agencies in India understand the full potential of mobile for reaching consumers. It is encouraging to see however that those brands that have taken the leap are now learning to use mobile in innovative ways that integrate with other marketing activities, demonstrating mobile’s gradual move from the periphery to the centrepiece of marketing strategies,” said, Edward Pank, Managing Director at Warc Asia Pacific.


Other findings from the survey revealed that Hindustan Unilever is regarded as the most innovative mobile brand in India, recognised as a “risk taker” and for having “inspiring creative”. It is also voted as a leader for its   “Incredible recall and engagement” followed by brands like Flipkart, Samsung and Amazon.


The Warc report outlined certain barriers pertaining to the industry and the overall growth of Mobile Marketing and advertising scene in India. The availability and reliability of performance metrics was flagged by 40 per cent of Indian marketers as the greatest obstacle to the success of mobile marketing. Qualitative analysis of comments by respondents suggests that marketer-side education is regarded as one of the greatest hindrances to the success of mobile marketing today. Within the umbrella-term of ‘education’, respondents noted concerns ranging from a lack of technological understanding to a lack of proven methods for delivering effective campaigns. While there is immense scope of growth, the industry needs education to thrive the challenge and sustain as the most important marketing tool. Social media is the most used channel and over half use mobile as a supporting channel.


“For brands to really see the impact of mobile on their operations, they need to focus on three I’s – Investment, Innovation, and Integration. Instead of looking at mobile in isolation as a marketing channel with a certain set of capabilities, brands need to leverage its unique features to innovate and push their creative limits,” said Rohit Dadwal, Managing Director, Mobile Marketing Association Asia Pacific.


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