The Consumer Companion: The Implications of Mobile Usage and Smartphone Ubiquity

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  • Sponsored by The Relevancy Group

    Written by Joe Laszlo with Ross Rubin, Nicholas Einstein and David Daniels Mobile Adoption, smartphone usage, mobile marketing, email marketing, app,

    About: Published in April 2017 this paper utilizes consumer survey data to examine the adoption of mobile devices and smartphones. The Relevancy Group’s recent consumer survey shows 86 percent of U.S. consumers have a smartphone, while 11 percent retain a feature phone.  This compellling research provides a deep dive on mobile usage including demographic details.

    Key Questions:
    • What consumer behavior trends should influence mobile marketing strategies?
    • How does tablet adoption and use compare with smartphones?
    • How are people interacting with brands on their phones?
    • What is the role of mobile apps in the media ecosystem?

    Key Findings:

    • Smartphones are nearly ubiquitous, and increasingly essential. Eighty-five percent of U.S. consumers have a smartphone, making it a key channel for interactivity. About 20 percent of U.S. say that they “cannot be without” their smartphone and that they sleep with it.
    • Almost 20 percent of U.S. consumers are phone-firsters, a segment defined by using their phones as their primary device for both email and online media and shopping activities. This group is unsurprisingly highly engaged with mobile, and their usage patterns indicate trends that the mobile mainstream will follow over the next six to twelve months.
    • The mobile phone is emerging as a key platform for content, communication, and commerce. Thirty-two percent of U.S. mobile users say their phone is the primary way they get news.
    • Consumers are open to downloading branded apps, but apps continue to face challenges gaining adoption. While consumers report that they have on average 18 apps on their phones, they also report they use only seven apps at least weekly.
    • Consumers are also open to an array of brand interactions on their mobile phones, with 43 percent visiting a brand’s website, 28 percent downloading a retailer or brand app, and 22 percent opting in to SMS text marketing, among other notable activities.
    • Propensity to interact with brands drops off significantly only for consumers over 60 years old. Thus mobile should be part of most marketing and advertising campaign planning.

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