February 2, 2011, 2:12 PM

Big brands give mobile marketing a big boost

88% will use various mobile marketing techniques this year, new survey finds.

Lead Photo

Survey respondents singled out Target as being a model of success in mobile marketing.

88% of marketers at large retailers and consumer brand manufacturers say they will use mobile marketing this year; what’s more, 75% of those already marketing to mobile consumers plan to increase their spending by an average of 59% compared with 2010, according to a new survey from the Association of National Advertisers and the Mobile Marketing Association.

Survey respondents cite two companies as being particularly successful with mobile marketing: Coca-Cola, for its mobile advertising, and Target Corp., for its integration of mobile web, rewards and wish-list registry. However, most respondents are less enthusiastic about their own mobile initiatives. Only 25% rate their efforts as “extremely” or “very” successful, while 53% say their efforts have been only “somewhat” successful. 22% responded "not very" successful or "don't know."

More than a dozen distinct interactive mobile platforms are currently being used by marketers, according to survey findings. The five with the highest adoption levels—at least by one-half of the companies surveyed—are:

“Mobile is clearly a fast-growing platform for marketers, but it has yet to attain its full potential,” says Bob Liodice, president and CEO of the Association of National Advertisers. “With the anticipated increase in adoption this year, we expect to see fresh, innovative approaches, increased brand-building success, and better accountability for this exciting channel.”

The research finds barriers to the adoption of mobile marketing by more marketers, including:

  • Lack of metrics to properly allocate mobile marketing within the overall marketing mix
  • Inability to prove return on investment
  • Lack of mobile marketing understanding by key people at the company

71% of companies have assigned responsibility for mobile marketing to an existing internal group, the survey finds. Only 19% of respondents say their companies have created a new internal group to manage the mobile marketing function. In most cases this group reports to the digital marketing team. 10% reported don't know, other or outsourced to external resources.

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