As we enter a new era in interactive communications with the advent of the smart phone, marketers are scrambling to understand its far reaching significance. To say that mobile devices have revolutionized the way in which business is transacted is an understatement. Ironically, it wasn’t that long ago that banner ads ushered in a new age in digital advertising and marketers rushed in to mine this marvelous new interactive opportunity. Who would have guessed then that a strange looking hand- held touch pad would soon overtake desktops as the consumers’ communication tool of preference?
The challenge of marketing in the age of mobile devices is not in identifying the new opportunities. Rather, it lies in the phenomenal speed in which the digital evolution has taken place. This dichotomy is exemplified in how ad budgets are to this day being dispersed. For example, it’s been recently reported that consumers spend 10% of their media time on their mobile devices while advertisers only dedicate 1% of their marketing budget on them. Yet, while print media only attracts 7% of the average consumer’s media time, 25% of ad budgets are spent on this rapidly shrinking audience.
However, it’s been estimated that, thanks in part to the smart phone, 75% of ad messages are experienced outside of the home. This out- of- home exposure is attributable to recent advancements in message delivery systems such as LED signs and radio which is experiencing robust income and represents 15% of the total time that consumers spend exposed to ad messages.
So how does a marketer figure out where to put his effort and hard earned marketing dollars these days? Although a medium such as print is on the ropes, digital content is still in great demand. The New Age consumer wants to be well informed. He or she also wants the convenience that smart phones provide, allowing for ease of use in every transaction. The question to consider is not what will be the next new wave in the digital revolution, but how can one combine all message delivery systems into a seamless, user–friendly interactive experience. Also, consider that the old banner ad is still around. It’s easy to get caught up in all of the changing opportunities that that the digital age is rapidly presenting to the consumer and marketer alike. Just take a breath and reflect on the good old days of paste ups and hot type.