We are at the beginning of mobile revolution, but you would not know it by looking at current advertising spend levels.
Derek Thompson, who is a senior editor at The Atlantic, showed that consumers are spending 10% of their media attention on their mobile devices while the medium only commands a mere 1% of total ad-spend. Comparatively, the quickly ‘dying’ print medium attracts only about 7% of media-time, but still captures an astonishing 25% of the total U.S. ad-spend, with print receiving 25-times more ad money than mobile. This shows in no small way how much room mobile still has yet to grow.
While the industryhave become increasingly optimistic on the growth of the mobile medium and companies like Facebook continue building out their mobile capabilities with the recent acquisitions of Instagram, Glancee, and Karma. It’s clear that advertisers are not chasing consumers in this space.
To fully understand this trend, we should examine one of the features that are leading to the rise of mobile today. More than 2/3 of the time smartphones are used for non-communication activities with the average American spending 94 minutes per day utilizing mobile apps vs. 72 minutes of web-based consumption. Mobile is poised to surpass television as the dominant consumer access point for all media. How we experience life, relationships, entertainment, education, exercise, and work have been completely transformed (for better or worse) because of mobile.
Despite mobile’s progress and momentum, we’re still only at the beginning of the golden age of mobile. There is still a huge gap between the rapid adoption of mobile and the budgets assigned to it. Portals will need to more than quadruple their mobile budgets to begin catching up to the levels at which consumers are embracing the channel. Statistics also show that globally ‘dumb-phone’ users still outnumber smartphone users 5.6 billion to 835 million, meaning that the ‘upgrade cycle’ to smartphones is still in the early stages.
Imagine a world in the next 2-3 years, where smartphones are in the hands of every consumer and tablet sales will exceed PCs. It will be a world where global internet users will double, led by mobile usage. At that time, mobile will no longer be a support medium, it will be the dominant medium. Today, we’ve already seen apps disrupt multi-billion dollar industries – gaming, retail, media, publishing, small business, photography, and travel.
At this point, not having a mobile strategy / roadmap in place for your portal is a recipe for disaster. The golden age of mobile is here and will be here for many, many years to come.