According to forecasts by research company Yankee Group, the combined revenue derived from mobile services, devices, apps, marketing, and commerce will reach $3.1 trillion by 2017. Despite these staggeringly large numbers, experts believe that brands are still slow to embrace mobile marketing in China.
On this week’s episode of Thoughtful China, managing director of global mobile association GSMA Leland Lai, country manager of market research firm Yougov China Min Yoo, co-founder of hackerspace XinCheJian David Li, CEO of mobile social application Alvin Wang Graylin, and founder and CEO of mobile marketing company Madhouse Joshua Maa weigh in on why brands still aren’t embracing the power of mobile.
“All advertisers should spend over 50 percent of their budget on mobile and internet,” says Maa, but current expenditure on these platforms is expected to hit only 3 percent in 2014 in China. However, he sees that companies are understanding the value of mobile at a growing rate, and expect the same of their advertisers. “If the client thinks you know nothing about mobile marketing, you’re not going to win,” he says.
“There is a large disconnect between advertising spent in digital vis-à-vis what consumers are doing,” says Yoo, because consumers in China are on their mobile phones all the time. Lai attributes this problem to a lack of traditional gauges for mobile marketing effectiveness. This lack has caused brands to be wary in their mobile marketing efforts. The experts on the panel agree that it will take time for companies to catch up as more reports on the impact of mobile marketing on consumers come into light.