Mobile marketing budgets to get a big boost

New Mobile Marketing Association survey across Asia-Pacific finds marketers don't yet have formal mobile strategies in place yet budgets are expected to rise significant in the next year

Mobile marketing budgets are expected to rise sharply in the next year as brands look to capitalise on what has become an increasingly preferred channel choice for consumers.

A new Asia-Pacific survey undertaken by Warc for the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) in partnership with The Festival of Media Asia 2014, found 90 per cent of respondents predict a substantial rise in budgets for mobile marketing, with 34 per cent expecting increases of up to 75 per cent.

At present, most organisations don’t currently have formal mobile strategies in place, and less than 10 per cent of current budgets are being allocated to mobile.

The survey was conducted in July and August and involved 336 client-side advertisers and marketing services agencies across the Asia-Pacific region.

Over the next year, marketers said app development and mobile display ads will be their preferred channels. This mix was expected to change significantly over the next five years, with social marketing, app development and mobile-based content becoming the most popular activities.

While 33 per cent of those surveyed plan to use SMS marketing in 2013/2014, this is also expected to drop in popularity, and only 11 per cent saw themselves using the channel in five years’ time.

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“Over the last six months since the first iteration of the survey, we are seeing a shift in attitude away from tapping mobile execution tactically to a more strategic imperative,” MMA managing director for Asia-Pacific, Rohit Dadwal, commented.

“We expect to see substantial growth in budget allocations as mobile becomes a key part of the overall marketing mix.”

Top consumer behaviour trends fuelled by mobile are mobile payments (74 per cent), multi-screening (67 per cent) and show rooming (51 per cent).

The MMA survey also found consumer concerns over privacy and security as the biggest barriers holding the industry back (42 per cent of respondents), followed by lack of required skill sets and insufficient budgets. Dadwal warned marketers not to overlook the privacy factor and called for more education for consumers on how their information is being collected and used.

Respondents were also asked their opinion of the brands best using mobile as a marketing channel today, and nominated Samsung as the most innovative. The technology company was followed by Coca-Cola (16 per cent) and Nike (10 per cent).

From an industry point of view, retail was nominated by 40 per cent of respondents as the most innovative users of mobile marketing to date.

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