Last month Joe Stanhope at Forrester Research published an important piece of work – Mobile Measurement Is A Customer Intelligence Imperative. Wanted to share with you some thoughts on why I believe that report is very meaningful:
- First, because it highlights the fact that consumer adoption of mobile and advances in carrier network technology are driving explosive growth in mobile browsing, app downloads and consumption of new rich media content as well.
- Secondly, it highlights the increasing sophistication of smartphones and tablets and advances in device usability & functionality that are taking place and explains how this is driving increased enterprise usage
- And finally, because it underscores the fact that measurement of this channel is either token at best or absent altogether with most brand practitioners and this is odd given the increasing importance of digital eCRM programs.
As this report correctly points out, the topic of mobile measurement has become increasingly frequent in digital analytics circles, and it’s not hard to see why when you consider all of the aforementioned factors.
When one considers mobile’s unique ability to measure all kinds of different engagement behavior and give the consumer an instant means of registering, engaging, responding, transacting, acquiring and fueling endless amounts of other key customer intelligence data – then there’s little question that mobile measurement is indeed a customer intelligence imperative!
In a subsequent blog post – Joe was spot on when he said:
“This report is an important call to action for Customer Intelligence professionals. Simply put, mobile isn’t going away, and it’s only going to get more important. You can’t hide from it; brands are getting mobile traffic today, whether they have a mobile strategy or not. How can organizations prepare for a mobile-centric world? Start measuring now to stay ahead of the curve!
Mobile provides a unique experience by way of the device form factor, usage patterns, carrier networks, and — most intriguing of all — location. Organizations need a mobile measurement strategy to tune experiences to the mobile medium and leverage mobile’s inherent advantages. Fortunately, CI pros have a couple of things working in their favor with mobile measurement:
The data is accessible. Mobile measurement generates a tremendous amount of useful information beyond number of mobile site visits or app store downloads. This data and its resulting metrics offer great visibility into how users interact with mobile websites and applications that can be utilized to design great mobile experiences.
Mobile measurement tools are readily available. Most organizations can easily acquire mobile measurement technology, as many solutions are currently available spanning a variety of functional capabilities and levels of investment. In fact you may already possess these capabilities within an existing measurement solution such as your web analytics platform.”
We’re agreed on all of Joe’s points.
In fact, Forrester’s Thomas Husson has also done some outstanding work that points out that less than a third of the top 400 global best of breed mobile marketing brands that Forrester polled had actually developed a mobile strategy. IN other words, 2/3 are essentially flying blind or haven’t even began to prioritize project measurement. And with measurement being such a key ingredient to drive, shape and inform strategy – it’s not hard to understand why mobile analytics is begging for it’s long deserved focus and attention!
But, mobile measurement isn’t merely about number of app downloads or unique visits to a mobile site. It goes far deeper than that. Mobile is complex in the sense that mobile marketing practitioners are trying to measure three key mediums:
Mobile Web – evolved from web analytics. Common metrics include familiar ones like number of page views, average time on the site, bounce rate, what ads and linked are clicked, but also include unique metrics like types of devices used to access the mobile website, screen size, audio/video support, and even portrait versus landscape views.
Mobile apps – evolved from rich Internet applications. Common metrics include how many downloads, frequency of use, average time engaged with the app, which customers actively use the app, and which specific parts of the app are most popular.
Mobile messaging – evolved from email marketing. Common metrics include those similar to email campaign metrics, such as open rate, click-through rates, and response rates.
And typically speaking, these programs reside with different agencies, technology partners, developers or other parties which make the task of corralling all this data that much more difficult. Combine this with the fact that many mobile analytics platforms are focused on one of these specific mediums (point solutions) and it’s all that more difficult for marketers to unify all this key mobile data and tie it to a specific customer or individual. And finally, we have the reality that many of these point solutions are unable to easily export this data (via RSS/XML or Open API) and we’ve literally shackled the customer intelligence professional from being able to overlay this data with social, display, email or other key data to better create insights and to focus subsequent messaging.
That’s why our Analytics 10 platform is a key step forward in the ability of marketers to unify mobile data. Whether that data stems from applications, mobile websites, Facebook pages or other social applications, Analytics10 makes it simple for the marketer to set up and monitor all their campaigns from one simple campaign dashboard. It also allows for simple data ingestion or export and that in turn makes modern eCRM that much more of a reality.
Forrester is absolutely right when they say that MOBILE MEASUREMENT HAS BECOME A CUSTOMER INTELLIGENCE IMPERATIVE. But, we encourage marketers to look at the increasing integration that is happening between mobile and social and to take a more expansive view of tackling the mobile analytics challenge and using these insights to evolve mobile user experiences and inform the enterprises mobile strategy.
You know what I think about it – what do you?