360i Report on Mobile Social Commerce


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360i Report on Mobile Social Commerce

  1. 1. Integrated Solutions. Measurable Results. August 2011 360i Point of View on Mobile Social Commerce1B0BOverviewThis is the sixth installment in 360i’s Social Commerce Series. Visit 360i.com/insights to read theagency’s prior reports on Facebook Commerce, Social Shopping, Social Commerce for CPGs, Daily Dealsand Ratings & Reviews.Even though social commerce is still so new that it’s taking its first wobbly steps, it’s easy to see that inthe coming years, much of it will transpire through mobile devices. While mobile social commerce isdifficult to quantify, consider a few of these trends: • Worldwide e-commerce sales via mobile devices are projected to reach $119 billion in 2015, up from $1.2 billion in 2009 (source: Microsoft’s Mobile E-Commerce Infographic) • 50 percent of Groupon’s business is expected to come via mobile in the next two years (source: Microsoft) • Facebook has more than 250 million active users for its mobile properties (source: Facebook) • ScanLife processes one barcode scan per second just through its mobile apps (source: ScanLife) Via HMicrosoftMuch of media consumption is shifting to mobile devices, social media is one of the top activities onmobile devices, and mobile commerce in the coming years will quickly jump from a negligible number toa significant revenue stream for marketers in the U.S. and worldwide. This report reviews how all ofthese trends are coming together and creating new opportunities for marketers. Where mobile social commerce fits in a marketing plan Dentsu developed a five-step model to illustrate consumer behavior. Dubbed “AISAS,” it starts with the passive stages of Attention and Interest and then – if the marketer is successful – progresses into the active stages of Search (searching for more information), Action (making a purchase or some other form of conversion) and Share (using social media to spread the word). The final stage of sharing can then trigger the cycle to start anew for other consumers. NEW YORK | ATLANTA | CHICAGO | DETROIT | SAN FRANCISCO | LONDON | info@360i.com | 888.360.9630 ©2011 360i LLC. All Rights Reserved
  2. 2. Integrated Solutions. Measurable Results. August 2011 360i Point of View on Mobile Social CommerceWith mobile social commerce, much of the activity right now is focused on attracting consumers’attention and engaging them to drive more interest. Today, more of the searching and actions occurboth offline and through the web, and when it’s done through mobile devices, there’s little that’s socialabout it.With mobile social commerce, marketers have the opportunity to encourage consumers to shareexperiences with their friends even before they’ve made a purchase. Additionally, once consumersmake a transaction, marketers can leverage mobile devices to allow consumers to instantly share theirpurchases with their broader social networks.Mobile social commerce applicationsThere are many kinds of mobile social commerce applications, especially when taking a broad view ofsocial commerce as we have in this POV series. Below are some of the more prominent or interestingapplications in various categories.Social integrationMarketers can incorporate social services, such as Facebook,Twitter and Tumblr, into their own apps to speed upregistration, allow shoppers to provide feedback aboutproducts and also share products via social networks, blogs,and other means. As an example, Steve Madden incorporatedFacebook ‘likes’ into its mobile product pages (see image atright) and made it easy for shoppers to share shoes throughthe social network. Mobile Marketer reported that adding thefeature increased the mobile site’s traffic by 30 percent within24 hours.Check-insApps like Foursquare can lure consumers to local businesses via friends’ recommendations andmerchants’ deals. The field has narrowed here, with Foursquare reaching the 10 million user milestoneand Facebook’s mobile usage continuing to accelerate; few others offer enough scale to enticemarketers to participate, though there are opportunities to experiment with niche apps. Other appsencourage engagement at physical locations, such as SCVNGR, which is focused on rewarding usersfor completing challenges rather than check-in activity.ReviewsAs discussed in our POV on Ratings & Reviews, reviews are part of the backbone of social media andremain one of the most proven ways to influence purchase decisions. There are countless mobile appsand sites where people can peruse and add reviews, from veterans such as Yelp and Citysearch tonewer entrants like SpotOn and Bizzy. Retailers that incorporate reviews into their websites alsogenerally do so through their mobile sites and applications.Group Buying and Daily DealsAs reported in our POV on this subject, Groupon, LivingSocial, Scoutmob, Yipit and other deal sites NEW YORK | ATLANTA | CHICAGO | DETROIT | SAN FRANCISCO | LONDON | info@360i.com | 888.360.9630 ©2011 360i LLC. All Rights Reserved
  3. 3. Integrated Solutions. Measurable Results. August 2011 360i Point of View on Mobile Social Commerceand aggregators share offers through their mobile apps. For brands with mobile apps or robust mobilesites, it’s possible to offer such deals directly.Q&ALocal question and answer services allow users to get instant feedbackfrom experts nearby or in a given location. ChaCha (see image at right),typically accessed by sending text messages to CHACHA (242242), reportsanswering over 1 billion questions, though those questions aren’t justlocally-oriented. Startup Localmind specifically directs questions to localexperts who have checked in at various locations.Style FeedbackGo Try It On, Fashism and TriMirror are among an emerging class ofapplications that allow people to take photos of themselves trying onapparel and accessories, upload those photos and then get feedback fromfriends and others who can vote via mobile devices or the web. Theytypically target teenage girls and young women who use the app to seekadvice, show off or both.Shopping FeedbackWhile apps mentioned above could be used just as easily in a retailer’s dressing room as they canwhile rifling through one’s closet, certain apps allow people to solicit feedback from friends whilemaking purchasing decisions. For instance, MyShopanion is a barcode scanner that lets users askfriends’ opinions on any items scanned. Another, Scandit, also lets users share any products scannedthrough social media channels.CollectingPinterest has made “pinning” one of the hotter crazes online as people share images of what theylove, from design to clothing to food to books. The mobile app allows users to take photos for their“pinboards” while browsing and sharing the latest images from boards they follow. Pose is mobile appwith similar functionality to the photo-sharing from Pinterest. Want! takes a similar approach to photosharing, with a focus more on what you want rather than what you love. NEW YORK | ATLANTA | CHICAGO | DETROIT | SAN FRANCISCO | LONDON | info@360i.com | 888.360.9630 ©2011 360i LLC. All Rights Reserved
  4. 4. Integrated Solutions. Measurable Results. August 2011 360i Point of View on Mobile Social CommerceCase Study: Amex enables social offers for merchantsIn a deal that is bound to increase the number of businesses running mobile social programs,American Express launched a program allowing its merchants to create Facebook and Foursquaredeals through a centralized dashboard. Merchants can offer deals for Amex cardholders, and deals areredeemed automatically through the card, rather than requiring coupons or offer codes.There will be hurdles here. Most notably, cardholders must proactively link their Amex credit cardswith their social media accounts. Additionally, merchants run the risk of alienating shoppers byshowing favoritism toward one payment method over another. Even with such challenges, Amex aimsto stand out by providing value to its customers, who can in turn use mobile social channels to attractmore consumers. Images via Fast Company NEW YORK | ATLANTA | CHICAGO | DETROIT | SAN FRANCISCO | LONDON | info@360i.com | 888.360.9630 ©2011 360i LLC. All Rights Reserved
  5. 5. Integrated Solutions. Measurable Results. August 2011 360i Point of View on Mobile Social CommerceUsing the strategic lens to evaluate opportunitiesWhen considering any of the manifold opportunities that mobile social commerce presents, it’s helpfulto return to the 360i Strategic Lens, which presents four questions marketers must answer thoroughlyto set themselves up for success while minimizing potential mishaps.Here are the questions and how they apply to mobile social commerce:1) Does it meet our marketing objectives?Are you seeking engagement between your customers and your products? Are you trying to directlyimpact sales? Do you want to empower your customers to become advocates for your products andbrands? All of these are possible with mobile social commerce, and the specific goal can helpdetermine which avenues make sense while ruling outothers.2) Does it leverage our arsenal?First, consider your mobile arsenal – your mobile sites,applications, ads, sponsorships and partnerships. Factorin your products themselves, retail locations or otherphysical touch points, and staff at such locations. Youshould also factor in your online and offline owned,earned, and paid media to promote the mobile program.3) Does it follow the rules of the road?It’s important to understand how your target audience isusing mobile media, and specifically how they’re usingany of the properties that may be part of such aprogram. In some cases, communication will beparamount while in others, social media will merelysupport a largely transactional experience.4) What’s the value exchange between the brandand consumer?The value proposition for consumers can include deals, information such as ratings andrecommendations to help inform a shopping decision, recognition for contributions the consumermakes, social currency when the consumer gets to share content and offers with friends, a feeling ofaltruism when consumers aid others with their own decisions and entertaining content that may keepconsumers engaged.Conclusion/Marketer Implications/Action ItemsMobile social commerce is just starting to find its footing. The number of mobile users has reachedcritical mass by any definition. Social media is one of the most popular activities for people on mobiledevices and the majority of mobile users are tapping their handsets to help them shop in various NEW YORK | ATLANTA | CHICAGO | DETROIT | SAN FRANCISCO | LONDON | info@360i.com | 888.360.9630 ©2011 360i LLC. All Rights Reserved
  6. 6. Integrated Solutions. Measurable Results. August 2011 360i Point of View on Mobile Social Commerce ways. The focus for most marketers now tends to be on tying together two of the three elements of mobile social commerce. As discussed throughout this series, social commerce in general is just starting to emerge as a viable way to deliver on marketers’ objectives. Meanwhile, marketers are dabbling in various forms of mobile social media, though usually on an experimental basis. It’s telling that the biggest social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, don’t have significant, scalable mobile offerings for marketers, though that should change in 2012. Finally, marketers that sell products directly online still tend to be in catch-up mode in creating robust, user friendly sites and applications optimized for mobile devices. Tying together all three pieces is especially challenging, but some aspects described here are already mainstream, and others are quickly finding audiences. Even emerging areas like Style Feedback and Collecting can attract some of the most vocal, passionate, and influential consumers, so applications of mobile social commerce can reel in a valuable group of users that will spread the word to others. Marketers should look for suitable ways to tie together mobile sharing and shopping. These shifts in consumer behavior will increasingly have an impact on how people make transactions and engage in the word-of-mouth activities that influence purchasing decisions.Next StepsContact your 360i strategic advisor to explore how mobile social commerce can be used to further yourmarketing objectives. About 360i 360i is an award-winning digital marketing agency that drives results for Fortune 500 marketers through insights, ideas and technologies. 360i helps its clients think differently about their online presence and evolve their strategies to take advantage of the new world of marketing communications – one where brands and consumers engage in interactive and multi-directional conversations. In 2010, Ad Age named 360i to its prestigious Agency A-List. Current clients include Kraft Foods, JCPenney, Coca-Cola, NBC Universal and H&R Block, among others. For more information, please visit blog.360i.com or follow us on Twitter @360i. NEW YORK | ATLANTA | CHICAGO | DETROIT | SAN FRANCISCO | LONDON | info@360i.com | 888.360.9630 ©2011 360i LLC. All Rights Reserved