Mobile content market – how it develops in Finland

I was just browsing through study released by Idean. What are the tools (=smartphone) for delivering the mobile marketing message (alongside with other mobile content) to end-users and how that market is developing, where (globally or locally) my questions while starting to explore this study.I was struck by amount of Symbian devices (still categorized as smartphones): 44% of penetration. It has similar share like Android in other parts of Europe. If smart phone penetration overall is at level of 47%, this gives me impression of unshared market at the moment. At least i am not hearing too much discussion about new services created for symbian ecosystem, so it remains to be seen who will take over that part of the market as symbian disappears.

Customer relationship marketing is dominating the mobile marketing spending with 60% share. Overall the amount spent last year is quite modest, only 16,6 Meur. Display and search are estimated to catch up during next year with equal shares of total spending. This is explained with developing marketing methods and tools.

Who will take this fast increasing pile of money and with what capabilities? Study is pointing our international players like Google and Facebook. They both are definitely increasing their presence in mobile marketing domain with impressive speed.

There are few things in those projections that make me wonder.

  1. Googles capability to play in market where Android is not dominant player. This contains naturally “if”, as they are market leader also in Finland the moment with 26% market share of smartphones. So I assume it is important, where those symbian users move.
  2. Facebooks capability to target ads in relevant way in small market with weird language and their capability to really move out of the desktop. The user experience with different mobile applications is still waiting for completion.

Another question is how much attention those big players have for small businesses and their needs related to mobile marketing. This is both challenge and opportunity to local marketing ecosystem. With well-focused approach the local merchants could reach their customers even in environment where big chains are dominating the visibility of global channels like Google and Facebook.

Methods and tools mentioned in study as source of growth have also some unanswered questions. Targeting seems to be the key. Relevant (in place, in time, in context) message will more easily reach consciousness of customer. In theory yes, but in practice there is unknown territory of privacy and related concerns here. This would require a trusted 3rd party to intermediate this “transaction” between customer and merchant. During the era of TV this was quite easy, while the actual TV-program acted as a link between advertiser and relevant group of consumers. I think this is one of the key things to be solvedin mobile world, even more important than marketing methods or tools as such.

Customer must feel sense of control all the time and merchant has to have relevant audience for its messages. Knowing the customers as segments would be one option where privacy and relevancy could shake hands at the same time, but this would also require trusted middle man to establish the contact.

Definitely intresting domain to follow up as there are so many forces struggling in mostly unclaimed territory. Waiting for “Men and their amazing flying machines” to claim their positions.

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