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Mobile Marketing Lessons from SXSW


South by Southwest (SXSW) made another big splash this year in Austin, Texas. As usual, the festival included a wide range of artistic, tech and interactive sessions that were both informational and entertaining. Mobile marketing and advertising were at the apex of popular discussions at the festival, so if you weren’t able to attend this year, here are the top mobile marketing lessons to take away from this year’s event:


Influence is King

For a long time, just reaching consumers was a marketer’s number one priority. With the popularization of handsets and mobile devices, this is no longer the case. Purchasing the right kind of media can get you where you want to go—but what do you do when you get there? At this year’s SXSW, attendees were told to shift their focus from strict number crunching and data analysis, and asked to embrace consumers as living, breathing human beings. The expected gain is two-fold: by solving real life problems for consumers with advantageous products and services, marketers can expect to build trust and gain influence with their consumers. Influence was the buzzword this year, and providing a mobile/smart solution to a real world problem is one surefire way to create a mobile marketing success story. 


Goodbye CPI 

Cost per Install (CPI) can be a fairly ambiguous tool to measure marketing success. Mobile marketing agencies are competing for dollars just like everybody else, so when the numbers sound too good to be true, they probably are. Even some top name brands that showed up to SXSW didn’t have a clue when it came to mobile marketing (lecturers were quick to point that out) which is being taken advantage of by said agencies. The recommendation was unanimously a blend of measurable performance and high quality content. By spending a little more up front, marketers can expect greater returns in the future. 


App Store Optimization

There’s a lot of talk swirling around about ASO (App Store Optimization) and rumor has it: it’s not as important as marketers think it is…yet. In fact, during discussion panels, ASO was hardly addressed at all. While apps still have everyone’s attention, they’re absolutely no good to anyone if they don’t work, and most of that happens inside the app, in places no one ever sees. The take away is this: throwing money at ASO for an app that doesn’t serve the user very well is a huge waste of money. Focus on building an amazing app first.   


All About Product

The loudest mobile message at SXSW, aside from all the amazing musical performances, was a reminder that product should remain the nucleolus of any mobile marketing campaign. Marketing must always lead back to the product. High-priced marketers with zero product knowledge or experience will get you nowhere in the mobile space. Marketing teams should be product oriented while also executing a strategy that’s flexible enough to withstand suggestions or changes influenced by the marketing plan. Product and marketing need to have a give and take relationship. Creating the perfect balance should be the goal. 



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