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January 31, 2019

Mobile Micro-moments-- The New "Now" for Brands

Mobile has transformed the way we consume media, interact with products and services, and make purchases. At the same time, mobile is now the first point of access to the internet, and a huge new range of activities and opportunities have opened up for marketers that was previously inaccessible. Here are some stats:

• as of December 2015 Americans spent 65% of their digital time on mobile (Comscore)

• 70% of searches on mobile lead to action within one hour (Surveymonkey)

• Mobile offers are redeemed 10 times more frequently than print offers (eMarketer)

This revolution enables brands to connect with the right message, with the right person, at the right time-- and, on mobile devices, in the right place.

“Micro-moments” have become the new battleground for brands. Thanks to mobile, micro-moments can happen anytime, anywhere. In those moments, consumers expect brands to address their needs with real-time relevance. Brands must respond with personalized contact and interaction experiences.

In 2017, research firm Asurion found that the average person struggles to go little more than 10 minutes without checking their phone (an interesting choice of words, "struggles"). Of the 2,000 people surveyed, one in 10 check their phones on average once every four minutes. If you do the math, that translates to almost 200 times per day. It's become an obsession.

Interestingly, mobile sessions are shorter than desktop, averaging a mere 1 minute 10 seconds long. 82% of us use our smartphones to check purchases we’re about to make in a store (Google/Ipsos, March 2015) and 91% of users turn to their phones for ideas in the middle of a task.

According to Google, these are I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-buy, and I-want-to-do moments loaded with intent, context, and immediacy, and they constitute a huge opportunity for the marketer that knows how to seize them. That's where the statistic I quoted above-- that 70% of searches on mobile lead to action within one hour-- comes from.

The consumer decision journey has been broken into hundreds of tiny decision-making moments at every stage of the purchase “funnel”—from inspiring vacation plans to buying a new blender to learning how to install that new shelf. Think about your own behavior and you’ll see that’s true. Foot traffic to retail stores has declined, yet consumers spend more when they do actually visit because they’ve done their research and made decisions before ever setting foot in a store. This is particularly the case with car purchases. Before, a buyer visited many-- even dozens-- of showrooms before buying a car. Now consumers spend a lot of time doing online research and then visit at most three or four dealerships. The same thing is happening on websites 
using a desktop or laptop. Consumers typically spend less time per visit but convert to a sale more often. In many ways, micro-moments have become the runway lights that lead people to your store or ecommerce site. 

According to Google, there are three essential strategies that can help you win micro-moments. You need to:

• Be There. Anticipate the micro-moments for your users, then make it a point to be there to help when those moments do occur.

• Be Useful. The information you present has to be relevant to consumers’ needs at that moment and must connect people to the answers they seek.

• Be Quick. Micro-moments are called that for a reason. Mobile users want to know, go, and buy swiftly. Your mobile experience needs to be fast and frictionless.

Here's a great example Google gave a while back: 

Red Roof Inn mastered all three strategies in one simple campaign. When the company realized that flight cancellations were leaving 90,000 passengers stranded every day, its marketing team developed a way to track flight delays in real time and trigger targeted search ads for the Red Roof Inns
near airports. In essence, the ads said: “Stranded at the airport? Come stay with us!” They committed to those “I-need-a-hotel-ASAP” moments and delivered with relevance on what people needed. The result: a remarkable 60% increase in bookings across non-branded search campaigns.

If you can be there at the critical moment a consumer makes the "buy" decision, you’ll almost always get the sale.

Want to find out more about using mobile as an engagement tool? Send me an email or call us.