Is a Mobile-First Approach Really Best?

EMarketer predicts that 2016 will be the year that mobile ad spending surpasses desktop ad spending. In fact, the researcher predicts that by 2019, mobile ad spending will make up about 70% of advertisers’ total digital budgets, accounting for close to 29% of all media spending.

“Mobile first” is becoming a popular credo for some marketers, but the strategy is not without its limitations (small screens etc.). Looking for success on mobile, many advertisers are relying on social media – pumping money into proven platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat – where video ads have provided opportunities for more branding-style campaigns as opposed to direct-response-style ads.

But is giving money to Facebook and allowing it to allocate inventory a viable mobile strategy? Lots of marketers are spending money on these platforms in order to “be in the mobile space”, without really having an actual plan for mobile. The article suggests that the growing messenger apps will eventually develop ad formats, creating even more potential for advertisers, and force marketers to think more about HOW to advertise on social media.


For a brand that’s new to the mobile/social environment, what part of its marketing strategy do you think is most important?

Will advertising on social media ultimately become the most important component of a media mix?




4 thoughts on “Is a Mobile-First Approach Really Best?

  1. Mobile consumption of content is huge, some site can see upwards of 75% of their consumption on mobile. What is crucial for a brand implementing a new strategy via mobile and social media is being self-aware, authentic and having a true understanding of the user-experience. Advertising on social media could certainly be one of the most important components of an advertisers media mix, but I don’t think it is something we can say universally. It truly depends on the brand, and what they are marketing.

  2. In terms of advertising space, this article mentions the mobile screen as the “most personalized screen.” While I agree with that statement, I believe that this space is getting less and less personable. For example, companies are now using “geo-targeting” or (geo-fencing) on mobile devices. Basically, geo-targeting occurs when you walk by or near a certain store and then receive a mobile ad from that store. For another example, advertisers are using “log-in” apps (like Facebook) to link more custom ads. This works because if you log-on to Facebook at a desktop and then log-on on a mobile device, advertisers will recognize you by the multiple log-ins. This will now give the advertisers more data to customize their advertisements.

    Like the Internet, mobile will continue to become less and less personable. During the ride, opportunities will continue to grow for marketers. With such growth potentials, marketers will certainly look for “mobile-first” initiatives.

  3. I think the biggest thing in any advertising is authenticity. I don’t think brands should just go mobile or focus on social just for the sole purpose of being “present”. There are a lot of brands/companies that it doesn’t make sense to be on Facebook or Instagram. Some companies have legal issues they would have to tackle. For the companies that it does make sense to be mobile, I think social is an important piece of the puzzle. The companies that have done it right in my opinion are the ones with integrated campaigns on many platforms. Social media shouldn’t be the end all be all for mobile (or advertising in general).

  4. For a brand that’s new to the mobile/social environment, the most important thing is stay true to what your brand represents and show it on the language you use on social media posts. It is also very important to be active and engaged and always try to connect and solve customers problems. In addition, on mobile, a friendly and easy user-experience is crucial.

    I don’t think social media will ultimately become the most important component of a media mix but it will sure represent a huge part. I think we will start seeing ads on messaging apps very soon. For a brand that may do this in the future, it is very important to know who your target is to send the ad to the right people.

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