As 2016 comes to a close, the mobile industry is abuzz with which trends will emerge as the frontrunners of 2017. Not that those of us at TUNE are leaving our day jobs for fortune telling or anything, but we’d be lying if we didn’t think Miss Cleo herself might at least respect our track record with mobile predictions (see our 2016 list).
So what do we forecast for 2017? TUNE CEO Peter Hamilton shared a few of his top picks at a recent fireside chat with Mike Dudas, co-founder of mobile monetization platform Button, during TAP 2016. Watch the full video or check out four of Hamilton’s top trends to watch, below:
2017 Mobile Marketing Trends to Watch
1. You’ll have 99 problems but demand won’t be one.
In our industry, there is never a shortage of marketing campaigns, but there is a finite number of people who can be marketed to. Everyone will be singing the supply-side blues in 2017.
“Everyone is familiar with the walled gardens, right? The big advertising platforms that basically own a significant portion of the inventory, and also sell to a significant portion of the demand. These folks are competing heavily with each other — Google, Facebook, Twitter — all these folks are really competing for the same demand. At the same time, they’re having their own supply problems because the supply has to be easily reachable, easily targetable; it has to have a lot of scale. All of these platforms have a limited number of people that are in their audience. So I think one of the things that is happening and that will continue to happen through 2017 is that we’ll have a supply problem in our industry more so than a demand problem.”
2. Brace for the convergence of adtech and martech.
Despite being two sides of the same coin, adtech and martech often experience numbers that just don’t add up the same way. That is, until now. In 2017, prepare for solutions that increase transparency and connect both sides the industry.
“There is certainly a convergence of technology around adtech and martech. These two things have been really separated for a very long time. You look at the big marketing clouds, and certainly they are solving the first-party marketing activities, whether it’s email or in-house campaigns, and they’re connecting to some of the largest channels. But in terms of being fully connected to advertising, and allowing people to really work with all of their adtech partners, whether those are network or DMPs or whoever these are— making sure the data gets where it needs to go — adtech and martech need to see a convergence over that time…
“I think something that’s a little bit unique about our DNA is that in our early days we were building technology for performance marketing — for people to manage hundreds or thousands of publishers and affiliates — so we were literally building technology for networks, the supply. And now we are also building technology for marketers — the demand. So something that’s unique is that — because we have technologies that we’re building on both sides — we understand the problems that are happening for both sides: the lack of transparency, the issues of discrepancies… It definitely creates an opportunity for us to help create that workflow that makes it easier between partners and marketers.”
3. Suit up for Big Retail.
Mobile has evolved from a channel to the channel. It’s how people travel, date, socialize, and buy. After mastering marketing strategy that wins on the web, Big Retail is shopping for results with mobile next.
“The other trend that’s happening is that big retail is coming in. The Fortune 500 are coming in. They’ve watched the mobile first, and now they’re entering what we call ‘mobile best.’ They’re taking all their learnings and everything they knew from the web. They’re starting to combine that with an app strategy that focuses on retention and engagement. And they have big, big, big, big dollars. And they’re not dummies. They know how to enter this market NOW.”
4. She who unites routing and measurement wins.
In the push for a more transparent and open industry, the winning technology will be solutions that can reliably get people where they need to go on mobile — and measure it fairly and accurately.
“There also needs to also be a connection between routing and measurement. So you guys know deep links and universal links and these things that help connect the consumer once they’ve clicked an advertisement or some marketing engagement, and they move on to an app or website. There needs to be simpler ways for us to make sure that routing happens the way it needs to go, so the customer lands in the same place they should land, but also that at the same time, measurement happens how it should happen, and that both sides on either side of that link, know exactly what happened. So over the next year, I think you’ll see a lot of technologies come to the forefront of this entire industry that have been able to solve that problem. There are some folks that have solved it really well so far, but it’s going to keep evolving, and the platforms are going to keep changing, and we have to stay on top of routing and measurement.”
The Future: There’s an App for That
For more of what’s on the horizon in mobile, check out Mobile Economist John Koetsier’s thoughts on artificial intelligence, bots, messaging, and the future of mobile, or listen to mobile marketing experts weigh in on the future of the app economy.
Tell us in the comments below: which trends do you foresee?
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Becky is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at TUNE. Before TUNE, she led a variety of marketing and communications projects at San Francisco startups. Becky received her bachelor's degree in English from Wake Forest University. After living nearly a decade in San Francisco and Seattle, she has returned to her home of Charleston, SC, where you can find her enjoying the sun and salt water with her family.