Facebook/IDC study finds, email top activity on smartphones

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Some say, email is a dead media, some know it is not. At least not on smartphones in the U.S… For American adults email is still the most common activity on smartphones. In the second place comes Web browsing, closely followed by using Facebook. This is the result of the “Always Connected” study from IDC. The study is based on feedback from more than 7,400 iPhone and Android users between 18 and 44 years old.

IDC Facebook Email top 2013These are the main findings of the study….
- 78% check email on smartphones
- 73% browse websites
- 70% using Facebook in some way
- 131 minutes per day communicating on their smartphones
- about 33 minutes of the above are spend on Facebook.

Now, it has to be mentioned that the study was sponsored by Facebook. The study supports the fact how important Facebook is for the communication via smartphones. It also makes clear how much time users of social networks spend their daily time when they are out on the streets, at work, at shopping or following sports activities. Obviously, most of the time is spend on Facebook – in eight different activities, people responded that they are almost 4-5 times more likely to be on Facebook than using Twitter or LinkedIn.

IDC Facebook Facebook Twitter LinkedIn comparison 2013

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The value of the study can in some way put into question, although we have seen many studies in the last years that demonstrate the importance of direct one-to-one communication on Facebook and the mobile use of Facebook. Another study by Localeze/15miles/comScore Local Search found that not email but search is the main activity of the mobile users. However, the approach of the study was different. It looked at people not only in the 18-44 years range and it proved the use of smartphones and tablets. there must be a reason why Facebook sponsored this study. I would not be surprised if they will publish some new mobile advertising opportunities soon.

Report: comScore unveils insights in main mobile development for 2013

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comScore Mobile 2013In a recent report called “2013 Mobile Future in Focus” comScore released their outlook for mobile trends. The report shows the U.S. mobile and connected device landscape in 2012, which is meant to the set the stage for the international expansion of the mobile revolution. It offers insights into mobile media consumption, mobile networks, platforms, as well as OEMs. It also includes key mobile market insights from the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Canada, and Japan.

The report illustrates the following trends for the mobile year 2013…

Multi-mobile use shapes the “Brave New Digital World”
The U.S. is surpassing 125 million U.S. consumers and tablets in mobile consumption. More than 50 million own smart mobile devices which make consumers being always connected. Americans spend more than one out of every three minutes online on mobiles. Does this show the end of the desktop?

Smartphones surpass 50% penetration and start ‘Late Majority’ of adopters
In 2012 the U.S. smartphone market became the year of mobile by finally surpassed 50% market penetration. It enters the “late majority” stage of the technology adoption curve. Smartphone subscribers increased 29% from a year ago and 99% from two years ago. 72% of all newly-bought devices were smartphones.

comScore Mobile 2013 Smartphone Tablet Ownership

Android and iOS Control U.S. Smartphone Market
Google’s Android OS and Apple’s iOS dominate the U.S. smartphone landscape with almost 90% of the market today. The well-developed app ecosystems makes it even more difficult for competing platforms to narrow the gap.

Samsung makes splash in smartphone OEM market
Samsung strongly competes more and more with Apple that is still the leading smartphone OEM. The year-over-year increase of more than 100% from Samsung and a two-year increase of more than 400% shows how much they are challenging Apple. The gap between the two competitors is steadily narrowing though.

High-Speed mobile connectivity speeds up mobile content consumption
Wider availability of high-speed internet access has increased the average user’s media consumption experience. Default Wi-Fi accessibility for smartphones and tablets like in coffee shops contributes to the new workplace and a better browsing experience for users. But also the availability of better networks speed (4G and LTE technology) will leverage the mobile content adoption.

comScore Mobile 2013 Content Per Topic

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The report shows that 2013 was kind of the “year of mobile”. With the rise of smartphone adoption to an over 50% penetration but also tablets becoming more prevalent, it seems that the world is moving more and more away from desktop internet usage. Mobile devices make up the digital media consumption of consumers these days. Obviously, marketers and media companies need to adapt their businesses to the emerging mobile multi-platform world but should also see the opportunity of mobile car technology (Google Glass Project), Augmented Reality (IKEA), QR codes (Adidas) or “mobile storytelling” (AUDI).

So now up to you. What has changed in your mobile adaption from last year? What are you missing in terms of mobile marketing development? And what would you be open for when marketers address you with mobile content?

Mobile Video Advertising – Why there is a positive future ahead…

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The market for mobile advertising is growing at high speed. More and more companies invest their first advertising budgets (although still not huge…) in apps, onsite or instream commercials. In 2012 the market for mobile advertising is said to increase to 1,5 Billion USD. In 2010 mobileSquared estimated the size for the mobile advertising market at 800 Million USD by 2015, and this sum is expected just for Germany.

One of the main drivers of this development could become mobile video advertising. Looking at the numbers of researchers and analysts, there is a bright future ahead. The market research company Strategy Analytics saw a growth by 958% of mobile video commercial views. They published figures from April 2012 which illustrate how the mobile video advertising market might be growing. While they counted 108 Billion mobile video views 2011, they expect that the market more than doubles to 280 Billion for 2012.

The challenge for mobile video advertising was partly based on the size of smartphones which did not allow massive advertising opportunities. Partly it was lacking the believe of the management in mobile video advertising up to now. And when we look at the minimum volume of ad campaigns in Apple’s iAd program which was downsized from 1 Million to 100.000 USD, it shows that expectations were bigger than the first mobile budgets. Often traditional campaigns are simply extended to mobile without bigger creative invest.

However, this might change with mobile video advertising.

The actual “viewing time” of video commercials in audio-video content is still just 1,5%, found Comscore. A recent study by Juniper Research stands against this and forecasts a “viewing time” for mobile TV of 186 minutes per month in 2014. That offers a lot of opportunities for commercials.

The content offering will also change with the future of the social web. In 2010, some Cisco research stated that 57% of the Internet traffic in 2014 will be audio-video content. This outlook gets support from the massive use and sharing of video content in social networks. And if we think about the fact that Facebook already has 488 Million mobile users, then it comes as no surprise that many social media advertising suppliers like ebuzzing, Hallimash oder unruly try to conquer the social video advertising market.

The creation of banners will still be responsible for the length of the viewing and staying time. According to some new insights of Medialets the mobile “engagement stimulus” of users increases by 35% when video content is displayed. Those users that opened or expanded a banner stayed 20 seconds with the ad format. The integration of video or product catalogue information propelled the staying time with mobile banner formats from 20 seconds to more than one minute, said Medialets. Apart from that, comScore Video Metrix published some stats showing that video ads surpassed the 10 Billion mark and showed an increase by 117% year-over-year.

The development is positive which we can also see in these interesting insights. No surprise that Nielsen forecasts a growth of 70% for the mobile advertising market. And mobile video advertising will get a good chunk of it.

Will the tablet be the catalyst in this development? Sure… By 2013, 47% of the U.S. Internet population will own tablets (117.4 million users). One in ten tablet users watches online video daily according to comScore. Just think about the parallel usage of mobile devices like tablets and smartphones with TV (especially in Prime Time), there could be fantastic opportunities for marketers and their agencies to create intelligent convergent multi-platform campaigns.

Isn’t this some great outlook for mobile video advertising…? if you have some more figures you can add, let us know…

PS: These numbers were put together from me for my moderation of the dmexco Night Talks 2012 (see picture).

Why retailers need to focus business on tablet users

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It is kind of an open secret that tablets make you spend more money than you want. Some new infographic by Milo gives the proof, and it makes clear that tablet users are often more willing to spend more than shoppers using their desktop device or their mobile phones. The infographic relies on data from insights by eMarketer, comScore and Adobe. It states that by 2014 one in three US internet users (approximately 89.5 million) will have access to a tablet.

Obviously, young internet users are even more open to tablets and willing to use them for online spending. Already today, 79% of 18-34 year olds now using their tablet to go on online shopping trips. In the category of the 35-54 year olds this makes up 50%, and 43% for those 55 years old or older.

Although the laptop is still the online shopping device, the tablet wins against all the other mobile devices fur online commerce across all groups. However, tablet users are willing to spend more than mobile and desktop shoppers according to the data sheet. What is even more interesting for retailers, tablet users are more willing to make a quick emotional purchase than smartphone shoppers.

The average tablet user spent $123 in terms of visitors by average order value on online goods. Desktop and smartphone buyers in comparison spent $102 or $80. What is also interesting to see is that 31% of tablet users do price comparisons on their tablet before spending money in offline stores.

How about you? Have you experienced some similar tablet spending attitude for yourself, or your family?

Study: Web-traffic boosts in-store sales

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In a recent study the research companies comScore, Accenture and dunnhumbyUSA found some significant relevance between in-store sales and a company’s web presence. The study was based on a panel of CPG customers and one million U.S. Internet users who have given comScore explicit permission to have their online activities continuously measured and matched to their in-store brand buying behavior provided by dunnhumbyUSA.

The report comes to the conclusion that consumers who visit a website prior to their shopping experience in a company store spend 34% more with that company and 57% more on products or services based on their specific industry sector. It also states that visitors of brand websites are frequent buyers of the brand in retail stores. It shows that 42% more of these clients finish their transactions than non-visitors. Furthermore, website visitors are also heavier buyers in a brand’s product category. They are spending 53% more in their category dollars than non-visitors.

“Since website visitors have higher affinity to the brand and the overall product category, there is an opportunity for brand marketers to drive loyalty through personalizing the website experience, catering to the preferences of their best customers.”John LaRocca, Vice President, Strategic Partnerships, dunnhumbyUSA

And again another study highlights the importance of content marketing as the new emerging trend in marketing. Shoppers were more aggressive in their approach to understand and evaluate their purchases prior to their visit in shops as a result of the massive information access through the web. According to the research, content marketing plays a significant role here. So, campaigns on the web not only add value to web shopping but also -and for some companies and brands more importantly- will help to drive and boost in-store habits and sales – apart from positioning a brand’s capability.

“Marketers who create compelling (brand) website experiences for consumers are extremely effective in driving incremental and profitable in-store sales. Analysis shows that consumers visiting the best of the 10 CPG brand websites evaluated in the research study, spent over 200% more on the brand than non-visitors.” Jerry Lohse, Senior Director, Accenture Interactive

Based on the fact that Brafton reported some weeks ago that the average consumer visits more than 10 web pages before a purchase decision, this study marks an important point in the relevance between online and offline shopping. This might be catalyzed by the new opportunities that smartphones, tablets or Augmented Reality (see real-life community shopping) offer, and shows the straight relationship between the two shopping experiences which more and more merge to one close shopping cycle.

Spot On!
More companies are realizing that offering web shoppers the same information and service as in-stores will lead to more purchase at both ends of the shopping cycle: online and at offline locations. The challenge for companies is to differentiate the shopping experience by using SoLoMo (social – local – mobile). Here the question for the future will remain whether in-store shopping needs to become more of a lifestyle experience or adventure to attract more consumers to join in-store activity (see IKEA Sleepover), or wether people will want to have real people around them and thus make it a social reality world, rather than a social web world…

comScore: Smartphones and tablets boost European media consumption ‎

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The digital environment is chaining very fast, based on the evolution of the modern mobile devices which are offering new opportunities and challenges, depending on whether at home or at work. Some forecasts already proclaim the death of the desktop. Today, mobile devices like tablets and smartphones change the daily lives of Europeans, and the way we use our mobile devices was explained in one of my last posts. .

A recent study by comScore, Inc. and Telefónica Germany called Connected Europe -published during DLD Conference today- shows some five developments and gives an outlook where the mobile evolution is heading to. The study was based on a survey of mobile subscribers age 13+ and their primary device. These are the key findings the study is coming up with…

Smartphones and Tablets make PC more and more redundant.
Reasons: Lower hardware costs, increased subsidies, and aggressive operator price plans. A majority of non-computer web traffic comes from smartphones (65%) and especially tablets (25%) are picking up momentum in the EU5 (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom).

Mobile Media is booming.
Reason: Ubiquitous 3G/4G networks delivering mobile ready content to multiple screens (PC, Smartphone, Tablets). 75% of the EU5 use mobile media users in October 2011 which is an increase by 62% in the past year.

Apple connected use wins in fragmented EU5 market across ecosystems.
Reason: However, there are powerful competitors (Nokia and Google), Apple’s iOS has the top spot when combining smartphones, tablets and other devices: 30% share of connected devices in use! Nokia’s Symbian and Google’s Android win in terms of the highest market share among smartphone.

iPad boost Apple’s market power.
Reason: iPad enthusiasm is not limited to Apple enthusiasts. Users of other phones such as LG (86% more likely) and Motorola (72% more likely) were overrepresented amongst iPad owners, as compared to their respective shares of the smartphone market. Obviously, iPhone owners were quite likely to have an iPad (66 times more likely).

Mobile commerce is increasing and changing expectations for the retail industry.
Reason: Smartphone users are massive mobile shoppers and push retail with double or triple digit growth rates across European countries. Just look at the use of modern mobile devices and their apps in the Prime Time and you won’t be surprised anymore.

Spot On!
According to the study, Germany had the fastest growing (increase of 112% year on year) user base and witnessed the quickest adoption of emerging technologies, such as QR codes. Interesting to me were two facts…
a) Men are still more likely to have a tablet than a smartphone compared to women, whether this is based on business issue or interest the study did not give an answer…

b) Smartphone and tablet is not an issue of income aspects. 65,4% of a household income under 40K EUR have a smartphone and 56% own a tablet.

Would you agree that calling a smartphone and a tablet your own will become as important as having a TV in the past?

ComScore study: 31% of banner ads get lost for viewers

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© carlos castilla - Fotolia.com

Companies and brands love to book page impressions with publishers, shopping and trading sites. Users find themselves being bombarded with banner ads all over the web – and not often do these ads add any value on customer journeys and the digital shopping experience. Often they bore us (dresses and dishes), annoy us (gay ads for married people) or make us hate companies brands (you love a and get b beer brands). Real Time bidding (RTB), (Behavioral) Retargeting technology and demand side platforms (DSP) will become game changers in the ad space in the future.

Sounds good but do advertisers get what publishers promise today, just on the basis of ad impression buying? Well, not really…

Yesterday, ComScore announced their “Validated Campaign Essentials (vCE)” which is said to be a Holistic Measurement tool for verifying the effectiveness of advertising campaigns and their subsequent targeting tactics. Thus, ComScore can double-check of where the ads are being delivered, where they are positioned within a page and who’s eyeballs they meet with the optimization add-on to know where they can be better positioned and at what time. The new technology or tool (vCE) will allow ComScore check campaigns effectiveness on a demographics basis.

ComScore definitely recognizes clients need for a world of better performance with campaigns for a reasonable future of advertisements. However the good news, when you worried about the effectiveness of your last campaign, there is much worse stuff to think about…

ComScore has found, in a recent comprehensive study, that over 31% of online display ads get lost for eyeballs of potential viewers, and for some websites it is even a scary number of 91%. Reasons are obvious: Some of these ads are below the fold. User might not scroll down far enough to view them, and vice versa. Some people just scroll too quick and thus get passed them before they have been loading.

The findings also state that as many as 15% of campaign ads were delivered to viewers outside of the targeted media plan places. An average of 4% of ad impressions found viewers in locations that weren’t on the plan, or where products weren’t available. Do you still wonder why the above mentioned banner campaigns reach us? But ComScore works on the issue…

“One big issue with internet advertising is that not all ads that are served end up being seen. This is a core issue raised by the Making Measurement Make Sense (3MS) initiative. In order for marketers to have the same confidence in the digital channel as they do in TV, we need measurement around the visibility of ads.” Mike Donahue, EVP, Strategic Partnerships, ComScore

Spot On!
Google will penalize companies and platforms that have too many ads above the fold in the future: 3 ads per page is sufficient and strategically clever, Google advices in this video. Just imagine your banners are being delivered to platforms that are damaging for your brand. It happens. Impressions appear beside content that were defined as “not brand safe” by the advertiser. Of all tested campaigns, 72% showed up on pages that had objectionable content, as defined by the brand. Now, that ComScore and advertisers like Chrysler, Discover, E*TRADE Financial, Ford, Kellogg’s, Kimberly Clark and Kraft among others push the development of the third-party tracking, there might be hope that consumers and clients get banners delivered that are targeted the right way. Nevertheless, companies need to start thinking about the right call-to-action in order to get the right conversation figures…

The near future of Augmented Reality (AR) and QR codes

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Augmented reality (AR) has a glorious future according to a new market research published by MarketsandMarkets. It will be interesting to see which role QR codes play in that future as more and more technologies arise.

The new market research report “Global Augmented Reality (AR) Market Forecast by Product (HMD, HUD, Tablet PC, Smartphone) for Gaming, Automotive, Medical, Advertisement, Defense, E-Learning & GPS Applications (2011-2016)” states that the total Augmented Reality applications market will be growing by over 95% from 2011 to 2016. The research sees it reaching a market volume of $5151,74 million.

According to Comscore research almost 10% of all smartphone users have scanned QR codes in June this year. The interesting fact is that most users scan their QR codes from home (57,4%). In public only 20% use those QR scan options from outdoor advertising or in public transport.

Although screen technology (smartphone, tablet and eye-wear) is still in its infancy concerning AR, and also facing some challenges, the Universities of Washington and the MIT see a better future on the experience horizont. Especially, the head up and head mounted displays have become mature, finds the study. Leading and growing in use are online apps, gaming apps and GPS apps. So far, campaigns like the following by MIRAT Paris work on the basis of QR coding…

But what kind of Augmented Reality technologies are rocking the transformation from the physical to the virtual world, or shall we say to the mobile world?

Some months ago, we only had browser technology like Layar and Wikitude. Today, companies like Tesco are experimenting with other capabilities in their retail shops. For a long time, we had to use QR codes or trigger points to initiate some activity with AR technology.

Layar’s latest innovation called “Vision” is another reason why QR codes are becoming uncool. Vision is a tool that lets advertisers and content owners integrate Augmented Reality ads in publications. As an example you may watch the Dutch magazine Linda how the technology works…

Some other technology innovations are also evolving that might catalyze the technology shift in the AR sphere. Here are three of them…

Aurasma
The Aurasma technology -unlike the GPS based technologies Layar (until the Vision version) and Wikitude that merely recognizes what someone has tagged as locations or places- is a new generation augmented reality browser. Aurasma recognises images through cameras in a way search engines recognise words. The browser then creates so-called 2D or 3D „Auras“ which show animated audio-video content. Just watch some examples of Aurasma campaigns.

blippAR
With blippAR the whole advertisment becomes the response tool. It is enough to simply point in the direction of the ad with the app. Still, the awareness challenge needs to be solved. And, the need for a specific browser to use the technology. See some examples of blippAR usage. At the moment you can even participate in the interactive blippAR campaign “escape the map” by Mercedes Benz.

Printechnologics
Printechnologics is based on Touchcode carrier technology. It contains a blind or transparent code which is embedded via invisible data storage development inside print products like carton, foil or simply paper. Printechnologics turns the AR identification around as you lay the paper on top of the tablet or smartphone, and not the other way round. And you don’t even need to modify your device, download a browser, use NFC (near field communication), or a camera for it to identify and initiate the online activity form the offline trigger. The last issue from the ICONIST carried a Printechnologics card and here you can see how it connect the two worlds….

Spot On!
In some months, the QR codes might be gone as an AR trigger, and thus leave the advertising world. However, all AR technologies have one weakness: You need to know that these technologies are embedded in any forms of campaigns. You need some trigger point, button, picture, image or QR code that people see. Thus, the main challenge for QR codes and Augmented Reality is to build awareness and understanding what it can do. Nobody is using a browser or a camera if there is no “visual” reason for virtual interactivity. I see TV using any of the forms as an extension for their TV shows in order to promote their digital content and advertising opportunities, just like the print industry did in the past. One thing is for sure: Augmented Reality will definitely become a new playground that connects the TV and online markets in the future…

What’s your view on Augmented Reality and QR codes? Let us know…

Paid search ads strategy – Consumers do more research before purchase

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Is paid search part of your advertising strategy to generate sales? Then, you better think about your paid search bidding strategy, if you don’t want to spend too much as a retailer.

According to a research by NetElixir -done amoungst 32 large retailer clients that spend at least $75,000 a month on search engine marketing- consumers are clicking more on paid search ads before buying products. The problem is that the cost per click went up by 16% in a period from January 2011 to January 2010, explains Udayan Bose, NetElixir founder and CEO.

“It’s a sign of the times. Consumers want to check out the best deal before committing their money to someone,” Mr. Bose concluded.

Some key insights…
- Consumers click 3.1 paid search ads before purchasing products (January 2011). Two years ago, it was 2.7 clicks.
- Consumers take more time to shop around (time between first click on a paid search ad and final purchase). This is a 12% increased in two years
- Consumers (52%) clicked on retailer’s display ad, a listing on a comparison shopping site, an ad on an affiliate site or social network, or on an organic search result before making a purchase. The interesting part is that all the activity came after the first clicked on the paid search ad from a retailer. This equals an increase by 30%.

Spot On!
We know that the time period between first click and purchase is long. The study and another one by GroupM and Comscore shows that brands and retailer need to extend their expectation for the time period from promotion to sales to 20 or 30 days, not only 14 days. It is not the last click we should monitor when bidding on generic keywords. Ideally companies and brands should not stop bidding on more general keywords that consumers type in early in their research. It is the best way to get consumers early in their purchasing process to meet the latency effect, and to become an evaluation partner for the later sale.

Study: Search and Social amplify purchase decisions

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One thing leads to another. Today we could transfer this quote to: One search leads to another social activity, and vice versa. And this interconnection of web-strategy tactics amplifies the user’s purchase decisions.

A new study from GroupM and comScore states that 40% of consumers who search for products to purchase are taking a social activity as a next step to finalize their buying decision. And the activity can be seen from the other direction as well: 46% of consumers who use social media are searching for products to expand the basis on a product range to take a decision.

58% of users begin their journey to purchase with search. Company websites come in at 24% and social media by 18%. The opinion of “friends” on the purchase decision is highly rated in social networks and cannot be underestimated these days from brands and retailers any longer.

The study reveals interesting insights in the time period that make the essential change in the buying decision process. The “late kick” comes 30 days prior to purchase when brands and companies have to engage with their audience – and can leave search tactics behind. A difficult topic to handle in the B2C industry but for B2B very helpful.

“There are still many brands who haven’t figured out why they’re in social media. We still talk to brands that are trying to determine if they should be in social media. The data suggests the two most important subsets in social are user reviews and category blogs, rather than sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.” Chris Copeland, CEO, GroupM Search

Some important findings on how social and search are linked together…
- 86% see search engines important in buying decisions – Consumers use search in buying cycle as a pricing tool (research products and select purchase location)
- 45% use search throughout the buying cycle
- 26% use search at the beginning of their research and shopping process
- Social is essential in the consideration process
- 30% use social media to create a shopping short-list
- 28% say social media has a valuable impact in creating awareness for brands and products

Spot On!
The study shows the impact that the combination of social and search have on the purchase decision. The challenge for companies will be to understand in which way to balance their tactics between search and social in reference to seasonal sales timing, marketing opportunities while not destroying maximum margin, and customer loyalty programs to amplify brand buzz. Another study by econsultancy also illustrates how undervalued social media and search are from a sales perspective. The study says that Social Media “gets eight times less credit for its direct contribution to sales than it should” and “Generic SEO gets credited for 14 times less sales than it deserves”.

What comes first when you take buying decisions? Search or Social? And how does it amplify your buying process? Interested in your thoughts…

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