6 Mini Case Studies: How Leading Companies are Adapting to the Mobile User

The mobile web has forever changed how marketers connect with and engage their audiences. From responsive design to apps, and from ads to data, learn how six leading brands are blazing a new trail.
Rebecca Levinson
Rebecca is a digital marketer converted from the world of sales. She enjoys the evolving world of SEO and the constant learning landscape it provides. Hit me up with any SEO comments at rebecca@propecta.com.
April 21, 2015

How are you reading this, right now? Statistically speaking, many of you are mobile. Is your brand ready for the mobile world? Are you meeting buyers on their terms, creating content for every context, and removing barriers inherent in small touch-screens?

Mobile marketing trends—like all marketing trends—will come and go, but what strategies are going to produce results over time? We asked a diverse array of brands about the updates and changes they are making in order to stay competitive in an era when the world is not just at your buyers’ fingertips, but in their pockets as well. From responsive design to apps, and from ads to data, the proverbial bases have been covered. Mobile internet access is quickly becoming the norm. Passing a mobile-friendliness test is a good first step, and you definitely need to make sure your website is ready for Google’s update tomorrow, but the competition is already there too. Delight users, capture organic traffic, and convert leads by getting beyond the minimum requirement and fully embracing the mobile web.

Simplicity Adapts to Every User Device

What is the goal for visitors on each of your main landing pages, and how effortless is it for them to complete it? When an increasing number of buyers don’t have a keyboard, you need to rethink complicated sign-up processes.

adapting mobile userGlobal etailers have to be very plugged into mobile payment and mobile marketplaces. If you don’t get the process just right—secure and one-click checkout—conversion rates suffer and loyal customers leave.

Optimize your mobile site for a global audience, but don’t rely on apps for checkout. Build in security features like Content Security Policy, and integrate external scripts as an added layer of protection for even trusted scripts. Make the process fast, simple, and intuitive for shoppers to use. – Guido Laures, CTO, Spreadshirt

Even if you are not a traditional ecommerce site, simplicity still rules.

mobile web marketingEverybody hates typing in a web address, landing on a page, having to scroll over and down, enlarging things to actually read them, and struggling to do any simple kind of navigation. Viewers who have to deal with that won’t become customers, and the only takeaway they’ll have from your website is how difficult it was. Any sort of marketing message will be completely lost. Websites that aren’t mobile-user friendly will see a serious decline in minutes spent on the site, pages accessed, and returning viewers. Mobile-friendly website are simply necessary. – Herman Heller, Co-Founder, Runbook

Enough websites are mobile-friendly that users have already come to expect it, and after next week mobile-friendly sites may be the only ones they see on their devices. Users’ tolerance of un-optimized websites is shrinking. It’s true, for example, that most decision makers read email away from their desktops, but 69% of them close the emails that aren’t optimized for their devices.

Speak More Than One Language: Mobile Apps and App Marketing

No two mobile users are exactly alike. Does your company have options available for everyone? A responsive website is a necessary first step, but an app delivers far more functionality.

mobile marketing[Dealstruck is] developing a native mobile app to address specific needs that a customer has while away from his/her computer. A native app (think Apple’s App Store or Google Play) allows us to engage the mobile user fully with notifications, alerts, reminders, and instant access to the tools they need the most to manage their account with us. – Bill Bonnefil, VP of Product, Dealstruck

Runbook has developed an app so things like task overview, approval, etc. can be done on the go. No one wants to sit around at his/her desk and wait for emails or reports, and, thanks to modern technology, people normally don’t have to. – Herman Heller, Co-Founder, Runbook

An app puts your brand right on the buyer’s mobile “desktop,” which keeps your brand top-of-mind and provides easy access to your content and support team. An app also provides all the additional functionality of notifications, alerts, etc. Some brands taking it a step farther and developing ways to use existing apps and social channels for their own devices (pun intended).

adapting mobile webInstead of force-feeding a solution on our customers, we are offering digital and mobile solutions to meet individual needs. If half the staff members in an organization are Apple lovers, they can use TSheets to clock in and out from the iPhones they already have in their  pockets. If part of the staff are Android fans, there is that option too. If you have employees who are master tweeters, they can tweet their timesheet to enjoy the experience and ensure accuracy on the go. – Kelsie Medel, The Handler, TSheets

The point is to create options that work for your specific audience. Don’t just copy what another brand is doing, ask yourself how you want your audience to engage with your brand, what mobile tools they’re already familiar with, and how you can bring the two together.

Mobile Marketing: A Worthy Investment

The mobile web is, obviously, not a passing fad. In addition to optimizing your own brand’s content, take advantage of the other opportunities it presents.

adapting mobile contextWe are increasing investments in mobile in general in the last couple of years. We intend to become as agile as possible to meet the market demands, With the rise of mobile device usage and payments (20%+ of worldwide payment transactions are now from mobile device), we have partnered with Braintree, and integrated their full-stack mobile payments platform in our products. Our mobile ads budget are also on the rise, and we expect some nice ROI. – Dimitar Serafimov, Marketing and PR, InPlayer

Make sure payments are easily made through your mobile site or app, and if PPC is part of your marketing strategy, consider testing part of your budget in mobile.

Use Mobile Data to Transform Your Marketing Plan

You know that you need to invest in mobile-friendly design, but are you missing opportunities where this new way of browsing can benefit your company? There could be a much bigger payoff than a reduced mobile bounce rate.

adapting mobile marketingAt SocialRadar, we are leveraging our years of experience in creating location technology to build out a framework and software development kit (SDK) so that other app developers can make improvements based on how consumers are using their apps.

These location insights give the developer an unprecedented level of context to create more personalized experiences in their mobile app. And, for the first time, app developers and marketers alike will learn the type of venues users frequent, understand demographics on the types of users in their application, and gain insights about a user’s preferences. Having access to this information will give marketers the “holy grail” of user data to target them based on where they have been and on future (predictive analytics) behaviors. – Kevin Alansky, Co-Founder, SocialRadar

With content saturating the marketplace, it’s increasingly important to connect with buyers and audience members in a unique and/or personal way. New data opportunities provided by users’ love of (and general trust in) mobile tech is available to help savvy marketers connect first.

Responsive Strategy: Adapt to Devices and Lifestyles

Responsive design was a good start, but it’s time for a responsive strategy. From finance to t-shirts, responsive sites to data opportunities, nearly every vertical is seeing results from investing in this new arena. Don’t get left behind on this huge shift in consumer behavior. A few small changes could dramatically transform your business.

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