71% of adults in the UK now own a smartphone, and on average users are said to glance at their mobiles around 150 times a day.

These were just two stats cited by Nick Fletcher, Director of Multi-Channel at Rakuten Marketing, at the Festival of Marketing today.

Highlighting how retailers are targeting the smartphone generation, he spoke about the technology-driven tactics used by businesses to generate results.

Here’s a summary of what he said:

Recognising the rise of the smartphone

With mobile making up 72% of our ‘digital moments’, it is important for brands to recognise that consumers not only turn to smartphones for personal and practical purposes – but to enhance moments of comfort too. 

According to Rakuten’s research, 89% of people say they glance at their smartphones while partaking in a relaxing activity such as watching television or going for a walk.

Likewise, smartphones are great companions for other consumer-driven activities like shopping.

92% of people use their mobile to enhance the shopping experience, for example to research products or read reviews etc.

Tailoring a mobile-first approach

Further to this notion of being constantly connected, Nick spoke about how retailers are beginning to implement mobile-first strategies.

This does not mean mobile-only, as consumers do not operate in silos. 

However, it does mean concentrating on mobile as the first port of call.

An example of a brand that has successfully executed a mobile-first strategy is Papa John’s.

In order to increase awareness about the opening of a new outlet in York, the retailer undertook a campaign ensuring those three familiar principles: the right time, the right place and right message.

Combining a localised and cross-device strategy, it targeted mobile customers within a three-mile radius of the new store. 

It then followed up on this by retargeting the same customers on other devices after they had left the area. 

With results showing a £22.10 ROI on cross-devices, this shows the power of relevant targeting.

Using social media ‘moments’ to capture interest

Today, Facebook is undoubtedly the most dominant social media platform in the UK, with 50% of mobile users having an account.

As a result, Facebook mobile ads provide a massive opportunity for marketers, especially seeing as 33% of consumers say they don’t mind seeing adverts as long as they are relevant to them.

Kurt Geiger is a brand that is keen to target the younger generation, and due to this chooses Facebook to drive awareness of its brand and increase engagement.

Aiming to capture a young audience, it designed a campaign that would grab the attention of consumers absent-mindedly scrolling through Facebook. 

Through placing dynamic product ads on the platform and retargeting across devices, engagement soared massively, with the brand seeing a 47% uplift in return on adspend. 

Seizing and identifying online to offline opportunities

Lastly, Nick highlighted the growing need for retailers to consider the consumer journey across all touchpoints.

With most brands basing their marketing on the online-only behaviour of consumers, many miss out on insight and opportunities elsewhere.

After all, the customer journey does not begin and end online.

Granted, it might start with a browse on an ecommerce website, but there are many offline moments, such as browsing in-store and reading brochures that many marketers fail to recognise.

Virgin Holidays is one brand in particular that has made strides by joining up the consumer’s online and offline behaviour.

Instead of sourcing data from newsletter signups alone, it collects customer email data across all touchpoints – from when a consumer signs up on the website to when they collect brochures or make a purchase in-store. 

Consequently, this allows the brand to target customers with greater personalisation, and in turn, convert online browsing behaviour into offline purchases - and vice versa.

Nikki Gilliland

Published 5 October, 2016 by Nikki Gilliland @ Econsultancy

Nikki is a Writer at Econsultancy. You can follow her on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn.

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