Marketers are 'not even ready' for mobile, says Google

Most marketers still haven't grasped the importance of mobile, despite the fact that devices now outnumber humans, according to Google UK sales director Martijn Bertisen.

Google warns marketers of how behind they are with mobile
Google warns marketers of how behind they are with mobile

Speaking IAB Mobile Engage – an event focused entirely on the importance of mobile – Bertisen suggested most brands have not built a better experience on mobile as on desktop. Alongside that, marketers have been too slow to shift their spend to mobile.

He said: "I would disagree that as an industry, as marketers, that we are even ready for the mobile phone. Very few of you could put down your mobile phone and show me that the website for your company is better than the experience I get on desktop."

Bertisen's claims are backed up by the stats. Mobile is certainly growing fast, but still only accounts for 23% of the total digital ad market, according to IAB figures released last month.

Key reasons for slow mobile ad spend include issues with attribution and tracking. Bertisen acknowledged the shift to mobile would be "painful" and "requires a rethink".

With the arrival of the mobile tipping point, consumer behaviour is changing, said Bertisen.

He said: "We check our phones collectively over 100 billion times a day. That’s quite scary. Think about happens when we all wear a [smartwatch] and we multiply that behaviour."

Bertisen outlined a vision of highly demanding consumers, who expect personalised marketing and communications that can be easily accessed from the wrist.

He said: "It’s much more about where and what I want – consumers are highly demanding and highly informed. With the data we have, it is no longer acceptable as marketeers to talk to everyone in the same voice."

Certainly the influx of data relating to location and behaviour has opened up a wealth of opportunities for marketers looking to make their campaigns more tailored. But UK consumers remain wary of smartwatches and other wearable technology.

According to a February survey by enterprise firm Apadmi, more than a third of Brits would be "too embarrassed" to sport wearable tech – suggesting the wrist revolution isn’t here just yet.


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