Towards the end of last month, Facebook boldly made mobile messaging service WhatsApp an offer they couldn’t refuse, and a few hours later that $19bn dollar offer was announced to the world.
Technologists, social media experts and analysts scrambled to make their thoughts and predictions heard.
Marketers across the world sat up and paid attention to what could be termed as the biggest big data acquisition we’ve witnessed in the era of the internet.
This is particularly so because WhatsApp’s data is now another spring of information, along with Instagram and Paper, that Facebook can analyse and use to its marketing advantage.
How does a newspaper create new digital products to attract new customers? Understanding your market and adapting your offering accordingly is key, according to Denise Warren from the New York Times.
At Digital Media Strategies 2014, Denise discussed new products, including NYT NOW and their development in the context of selling digital subscriptions.
As the pioneers of the paywall, what do the New York Times team have to say about making revenue from digital and innovation in product development?
More than any other industry, bars and restaurants are perfectly positioned to take advantage of the boom in smartphone use.
Decisions on dining are often made on the spur of the moment so by having a simple mobile site with a booking tool and click-to-call button restaurants will put themselves in the best position to attract some extra customers.
A new report form JiWire has found that consumers are twice as likely to use mobile than desktop as a source of information about where to eat.
To find out whether restaurants are making the most of this opportunity I searched for places to eat around the Econsultancy office in London’s Soho.
It’s a prime tourist spot that’s also home to thousands of office workers, so there’s plenty of money to be made keeping all those people fed.
Last year Econsultancy published an article claiming that some businesses doubt the value of personalisation.
Although 94% of companies agree that personalisation ‘is critical to current and future success’ less than half of companies are personalising their website experience.
This isn’t because they think personalisation is unimportant, but because they don’t actually know how to make the most of it.
However, even the smallest of companies can target their consumers directly using personalised content.
Mobile apps are now a key part of the mobile marketing armory.
And as Facebook has become an increasingly mobile company it has invested in developing its mobile app ad format which is designed to drive app downloads from Apple’s App Store and Google Play.
Conversion rates from mobile commerce remain extremely low when compared with desktop and tablet, as people often prefer to use smartphones for research rather than purchases.
However, I’ve recently come across data which shows that smartphone apps are an exception to this rule, and in fact convert at a rate that’s closer to desktop than the mobile web.
Data from mobile commerce platform Poq Studio shows that in November and December 2013 conversion rates from smartphone apps was 1.8% compared to 2.4% on desktop and 0.73% on the mobile web.
This is indicative of the fact that mobile apps are generally used by loyal customers, as the data also shows that 78% of apps users were return visitors, compared to 40% on mobile sites.
Furthermore, former ASOS director James Hart previously stated that the company’s apps saw a “much higher” conversion rate than the mobile web.
UK retailers Tesco and Morrisons came first and second respectively in The Search Agency UK's latest mobile experience scorecard.
Last week in the importance of responsive design for B2B companies I looked at the scorecard in relation to the suitability of using the FTSE 100 as a test group for mobile experience, due to its large percentage of B2B companies and major international corporations.
As it turned out, despite the plethora of retail chains in the FTSE 100, only two companies listed used responsive design and they were both B2B. Of the remaining 98 companies, 42 use dedicated mobile sites, while the other 56 do not provide a separate mobile experience from the desktop version of their site.
Each of the FTSE 100 companies were evaluated and ranked according to load speed, site format, download speed, social media presence and app presence.
The top scorers in the test were in fact retailers: Tesco, which came in first with a score of 4.38 out of five and Morrison Supermarkets, which came in second with 4.12 out of five.
The average score for all companies in the study is 1.99 out of five, which is slightly below the US average of 2.29.
In the above mentioned article I go into greater depth in regards to the importance of responsive design versus hosting a mobile dedicated site for both retailers and B2B companies. Here I’ll be taking a look at the top companies Tesco and Morrisons, which both operate a dedicated mobile site rather than a responsive desktop site, to see if I agree with the findings.
Bakery chain Greggs has launched a new loyalty app that enables customers to pay in any of its 1,700 UK stores using their mobiles rather than cash or cards.
It aims to reward customer loyalty, with users getting offers, free coffee and prize draws as well as being able to see their purchase history.
Greggs is incentivising people to download the app by offering a free breakfast if people add £20 to their account, while the first 10,000 customers to sign up for ‘Auto Top-Up’ with PayPal will earn a £5 bonus credit.
This isn’t the first time mobile payments have come to the high street, as Starbucks has had a transactional mobile loyalty app for several years. Similarly Aurora Fashions Group, which owns Oasis and Warehouse among other brands, allows customers to pay using the PayPal inStore mobile app.
Game and B&Q also have excellent loyalty apps, though Game’s isn’t transactional.
Here are some of the most interesting digital marketing statistics we saw last week.
Statistics include London Fashion Week, online reviews, real-time marketing, mobile conversion rates, Google click-to-call, and automotive sales on eBay.
For more digital marketing stats, check out our Internet Statistics Compendium.
While location based marketing is not a new strategy, iBeacon, Apple’s recently introduced Bluetooth LE-based technology that extends location-based services in iOS, offers exciting new opportunities to engage consumers in retail stores and other destinations.
iBeacon uses Bluetooth 4.0 to pick up signals from Bluetooth-enabled phones. With an advanced API software and transmitter hardware that reaches up to 150 feet, the technology allows businesses to precisely estimate a phone-owner’s location, and exchange data and information.
iBeacons are so efficient that even the largest of stores would only need handful of beacons per floor to enable a high degree of positioning accuracy.