Mobile & SMS 2020

Mobile and SMS marketing strategies dominate, here’s why

Digital marketing and communication strategies are ever-evolving. However, SMS for business and mobile marketing endure as fundamental channels for reaching customers instantly. The power of these marketing channels can be seen in the evidence. Proving that connecting with customers via mobile is the most effective and engaging strategy businesses can implement.

The following compilation of statistics demonstrates the significance of mobile and SMS:

  • Why mobile marketing is essential in an attention economy
  • How the use of SMS improves engagement rates
  • The significance of mobile’s role in multichannel marketing
  • Why mobile commerce is so effective
  • How mobile marketing efforts influence brand loyalty
  • What the future of SMS and mobile messaging might look like

In today’s digital landscape, attention is a scarce commodity. Previously, traditional media, such as TV captured consumer attention. But now the focus is fixed on mobile devices, with over three billion people utilizing smartphones globally.

  • Worldwide usage of mobiles and tablets have surpassed desktops since 2016 (Statcounter Global stats, 2016)
  • Research reveals that Americans check their phones 96 times a day, around once every ten minutes (Asurion, 2019)
  • The 2019 Global State of Mobile Report shows that most consumers are spending their online time on mobile devices (Comscore, 2019):
    • Consumers in the USA and UK spend 77% of their online time on mobiles
    • Indonesian consumers spend 91% of their total online minutes on mobile devices
    • 88% of people that use instant messaging apps worldwide only access them via mobile
    • 79% of people across the globe only access coupons and incentives via mobile
    • In the USA, 77% of minutes spent on using telecommunications, retail, and health is done via mobile, leaving 23% of minutes via desktop
    • In 2019, mobile commerce saw $8 billion in growth in the USA (a 25% increase year-on-year)

Source: Platform Comparison Market Share

SMS; a wide-reaching marketing channel with impact

Business text messaging has long been used to communicate with customers–and for a good reason. SMS is an accessible, direct, and personalized platform preferred by many consumers.

  • Consumers are 4.7X more likely to rate real-time messaging as important versus unimportant (Salesforce, 2018)
  • In 2019, 41% of consumers gave their phone numbers to retailers and websites. An increase from 38% of consumers in 2018, signaling growing trust in sharing personal data (Deloitte, 2019)
  • The majority of survey respondents have a mobile-optimized website (42%) and do mobile advertising (26%) as part of their mobile marketing strategy. Yet, only 14% employ mobile messaging in their marketing strategy (Marketo, 2017)
  • In Australia, studies show that SMS notifications and reminders are an “effective” way to increase survey responses (60%) and cooperation rates (79%) (Chittleborough, Campostrini, Dollard & Winifed Taylor, 2016)
  • 70% of consumers believe that SMS is a good way for businesses to capture their attention, and 64% think that businesses should use SMS-based engagement more often (SAP, 2014)
  • According to a Shift Communications survey, 82% of US smartphone owners open every text message they receive (SHIFT Communications, 2015)
  • Customers ranging in age use SMS to communicate with companies (Salesforce, 2018):
    • 78% of people aged 55+
    • 77% of people aged 39-54
    • 81% of people aged 20-38

Mobile’s role in multichannel marketing strategies

As consumer expectations continue to increase, SMS and instant messaging options are preferred methods of communication. Catering to diverse recipients means businesses must have an equally diverse communication strategy.

  • Among surveyed marketers in North America, over 60% have six or more technologies in their marketing tech stacks (Marketo, 2017)
  • 79% of mobile marketers that use SMS are more likely to employ other unique mobile tactics than those who don’t (Gartner, 2016)
  • CX leaders consider mobile engagement and optimization (19%) as a higher priority in 2020 than conversion rate optimization (11%) (Adobe, 2020)
  • A report by Salesforce reveals that adoption rates of mobile messaging grew 31% between 2018 and 2020, while email only grew 11%. It also explained that high performing businesses are more likely to leverage mobile messaging compared to moderate or underperforming companies (Salesforce, 2020)
    • Out of surveyed marketers, 57% that employ mobile messaging have improved audience segmentation, 64% improved personalization, and 50% expanded user functionality.
    • 77% of high performers employ mobile messages, compared to 55% of underperformers
    • 49% of high performers plan to increase their use of mobile marketing tools, compared to only 33% of underperformers
    • 65% of high performers have improved audience segmentation in their mobile messaging over the past year, and 73% have improved personalization
    • Only 44% of underperformers have improved audience segmentation, and 57% have improved personalization

Smartphones and mobile devices are predominately used to connect with one another. But in today’s digital age, customers can also utilize their devices to simplify shopping experiences and automate the purchasing process.

  • According to Deloitte, 56% of all in-store purchases are influenced by digital interactions, with 37% influenced by web-enabled mobile devices, such as smartphones (Deloitte, 2016)
  • Helpful mobile interactions such as friendly customer service are 1.5X more likely to encourage purchases with a brand than interactions that aren’t considered helpful (Think with Google, 2017)
  • Approximately 9 out of 10 times following valuable or relevant branded mobile experiences, consumers state that they would purchase from the brand (Think with Google, 2017)
  • By 2021, total mobile eCommerce sales are predicted to reach over $3.5 trillion, up from $2.9 trillion in 2020 (eMarketer, 2018)
  • Mobile commerce is expected to account for 72.9% of total eCommerce sales by 2021 (eMarketer, 2018)
  • 8% of adults who have used their phone to make an in-store purchase utilized SMS payments in 2018, double from 2017 (Deloitte, 2018)
  • Among survey respondents, 13% have used mobile ‘tap and pay’ solutions (Deloitte, 2019)
  • The value of digital coupon redemption is expected to double by 2022, exceeding $90 billion, and account for 80% of all coupon redemptions (Juniper Research, 2017)
  • 64% of consumers expect brands to interact and respond to them in real-time (Salesforce, 2018)

The effects of mobile messaging on brand loyalty

Personalized and engaging loyalty programs can increase customer satisfaction and influence purchases. With loyalty programs and targeted offers, enterprises can leverage the personal nature of mobile messages.

  • A report of American and European consumers revealed that (Bond, 2018):
    • 70% are more likely to recommended brands with good loyalty programs
    • Loyalty programs that establish positive emotional connections with members see a 27% increase in member spending
    • 95% of loyalty members want to engage with loyalty programs through contemporary technologies like chatbots
  • 80% of consumers say that immediate responses to their requests influence their loyalty to brands (Salesforce, 2018)

Implementing mobile messaging is essential for business communication strategies as more consumers opt for digital channels over human interactions. The implementation of AI and automation will ensure businesses meet increasing demands for instant communication.

  • Mobile ads are expected to overtake TV ad revenue for the first time in 2020, with an 18% increase in revenue from 2019 (Deloitte, 2020)
  • 85% of executives believe that implementing customization and real-time delivery could be the next big wave of brand competitive advantage (Accenture, 2019)
  • Organizations are looking to implement sustainable and long-term digital change, such as automation, with 52% of telco organizations already using chatbots (Gartner, 2019)
  • In 2018, there was a 160% increase in businesses interested in using chatbots and similar technologies compared to previous years (Gartner, 2019)
  • 20% of organizations are currently using AI for automated offers, compared to just 9% the year before (Adobe, 2020)
  • 84% of global businesses believe that AI will give them a competitive advantage (MIT Sloan Management Review, 2017)
  • By 2022, 70% of office workers will have daily interactions with chatbots and other conversation-based channels (Gartner, 2019)
  • By 2022, Juniper predicts that chatbots will generate $8 billion in cost-savings per annum (Juniper Research, 2017)
  • According to market analysis, the future compound annual growth rate of SMS marketing will continue to rise and positively impact the growth of several industries (Grand View Research, 2019):
    • Between 2019 and 2025, SMS marketing in the US will expect a CAGR of 20.3%
    • Between 2019 and 2025, the media and entertainment industry will expect a CAGR of 22%, due to the positive impact of location-based SMS promotions