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Marketers are struggling to keep up with the mobile revolution claims research

Smartphone use and innovations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) are growing so quickly that marketers are struggling to keep up according to research from marketing intelligence service WARC and the Mobile Marketing Association. More than 80% of client-side marketers expect their mobile budgets to increase over the next year, 40% believe that more than a quarter of their marketing budget will be spent on mobile in five years' time. Yet most client-side marketers do not have a formal mobile marketing strategy for their brand.

Key findings

  • Mobile has disrupted the marketing industry, with almost half of marketers already feeling the disruption, whilst the other half is expecting a big impact in the near future.
  • 83% of marketers will increase their budget in the next year, and in five years' time, 40% expect more than a quarter of their budget to be dedicated to mobile.
  • The majority of client-side marketers do not have a formal mobile marketing strategy for their brand, and are not ready for mobile in terms of internal organisation or external collaboration.

 Discussing how the mobile revolution is affecting the marketing industry, Amy Rodgers, research editor at WARC, says: “The impact of smartphone penetration in EMEA has been disruptive across industries, and the results of this research show that marketers expect it to have even more of an impact over the coming years. Mobile marketing has now become mainstream and a key piece of digital marketing strategies. This research shows that whilst the proportion of marketers who have a separate strategy for mobile has decreased, integration of mobile with other marketing strategies has increased.”

Client-side respondents
Q: Do you have a formal mobile marketing strategy for your brand and if so how closely is it integrated with other marketing activities? n=122


Talking about the new opportunities mobile offers PROs in particular, Rodgers says: “For communications professionals, the opportunity in mobile lies in video and social advertising, with location data and the growth of the Internet of Things and smart-home technologies expected to drive mobile growth over the next few years.”

All respondents
Q: Are you/your clients planning to use any of the following and their associated mobile technologies in 2017? n=283

Despite the difficulty of keeping up with mobile developments, Rodgers concludes that smartphones offer more opportunities than threats for marketers in the future, and that overall the marketing industry is responding well to the market changes: “Though measurement remains a challenge, and consumer privacy concerns are ongoing, the year-on-year trends shown in this report represent the mobile opportunity for marketers in the EMEA region, and the progress being made in optimising marketing via the mobile channel.”

The State of The Industry: Mobile Marketing in EMEA report is based on an online survey of 548 of marketers carried out in March and April 2017. Respondents were from companies on the client-side and sales-side, and were based in 51 markets across EMEA.

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