The rise of mobile marketing in the Asia-Pacific region: Three things to know

The Econsultancy 2015 Digital Intelligence Briefing: Digital Trends Update + State of Mobile in APAC was a ground-breaking piece of research that the entire communications community has been able to benefit from. After a year of observation, here are three things you should know about mobile marketing in the Asia-Pacific region.

APAC companies are investing in mobile

With so much opportunity on the table, it would be foolish for companies to rest on their laurels. As expected, there appears to be a strong appetite among APAC organizations to get more involved with mobile.

Two thirds (67%) of companies in Asia say mobile will become a fundamental part of their marketing and commerce strategy. Three in five are backing that up by planning on increasing their spend on mobile marketing by an average of 20%. Meanwhile, just 3% of organizations will be decreasing their allocated spend in this area.

Although 30% of companies in Asia Pacific do cite a lack of resources as a significant barrier to investing further in mobile marketing, the message from most respondents is they know how important mobile is and they are trying to do something about it.

The next few years will really be an experiment

Companies are only scratching the surface with how they can use mobile to in enhance their customer's' experience. Encouragingly, businesses appear to be committed to trying new tactics and are putting the resources behind them.

Over two in five organisations (44%) based in Asia Pacific say they have budget specifically allocated to experimenting with mobile over the next year. Chinese companies, who are some of the most mature in terms of mobile capabilities, are most likely to have allocated budget to experimenting, with 60% saying that’s the case.

Among other areas, mobile coupons is an area that will see a lot more activity over the next 12 months in Asia. While just 26% of companies are planning on using the mobile technology, this is an increase of 16 percentage points from the proportion of companies currently incorporating mobile coupons into their activities to engage with customers.

There is a lack of strategic direction in APAC mobile marketing

Although there is clearly excitement and activity around utilizing mobile, it seems most of this is being done with the absence of a strategic direction for mobile. Less than a quarter of the responding companies (24%) claim to have a ‘well-defined mobile strategy’ and an even smaller proportion, (18%) described themselves as being ‘mobile first’.

More than a quarter of companies (28%) cited ‘no clearly defined strategy’ as a significant barrier to investing more resources in mobile marketing, a sentiment more than echoed by agencies respondents: 41% of agencies said the same thing regarding their clients. While the increase in spending and the commitment to trying new tactics is encouraging, it is also important to see how mobile fits into the long-term goal of give customers an excellent experience. With so many customers using the mobile devices several times a day, companies must have the infrastructure, capabilities and processes to meet them. Building these things takes a strategic approach and time.

Source: 2015 Digital Intelligence Briefing: Digital Trends Update + State of Mobile in APAC