Advertisers need to retain their humanity amid the plethora of mobile technology available to them in reaching their audiences, said Lucy Brindley, APAC senior mobile sales specialist for marketing cloud at Salesforce.
Speaking to Campaign Asia-Pacific in Singapore, Brindley said experience is top of consumers’ agendas in mobile advertising right now, but some brands are still behind.
“What I keep on seeing is a slight disconnect still around going through the process of saying ‘we ought to be doing mobile marketing, we’ve got an app’, but not really thinking clearly about strategy with a human element,” she explained.
Brindley said brands and agencies “need to take their mobile marketing hat off sometimes” and examine the experiences they enjoy as consumers with brands on mobile.
“It’s down to brands to provide that experience of old, when you walk into your local shop, and they know your name, your favourite item, and they give you great friendly service with the best product,” she said.
With the rise of AI and the Internet of Things, Brindley said it is especially critical for brands not to get lost within the technology and expect it to craft their identity or personality for them.
“We need these amazing technologies to be able to scale, of course we do, but that experience brands provide has to be one we as customers want to have again, and want to tell our friends about,” she said.
Brindley readily admits that in Asia-Pacific there is a “maturity curve”, with some markets more adept with mobile marketing and technology than others. But in every market, it’s about using the right channel.
“The key is working out what brands do have available to them, especially in less mature markets,” she said. “If it’s SMS, then it’s about using that technology to provide something of value to our customers, rather than continually trying to make them buy something.”
As an example, Brindley said Salesforce has seen impressive engagement continue with SMS, a comparatively ancient and expensive platform, when it is used for transactional, rather than marketing, communications.
“Think about when you make a bank transfer, you get an SMS,” she highlighted. “It’s this business-critical communication that gets cut-through [with consumers] which isn’t under the same rules as marketing communications. We all want to get a reminder from our dentist, doctor or hairdresser. That benefits business as well, when you look at the cost of missed appointments versus the cost of that reminder.
“So we’re seeing marketing communications moving to apps and messaging platforms because you can have a much richer experience.”