Digital platforms: tablets for browsing, smartphones for planning
30 May, 2012
Modern devices like iPads and smartphones are starting to influence people’s buying decisions but in different ways, according to some interesting analysis in Campaign.
Smartphone penetration has now hit 50%, while tablet ownership grew by 72%, according to the piece by InMobi sales director John Stoneman and MPG Media Contacts head of intelligence Denise Turner. “The question for brands is how they can harness the power of connected devices such as smartphones, tablets and PCs to [engage with consumers] more effectively.”
Research by InMobi found that smartphone users ‘snack’ on content throughout the day rather than browse for extended periods. Tablet users are the heaviest digital users, and the number of mobile video users is growing fast. People are also dual-screening—using their tablets while watching TV, for instance—which is good news for brands. “This shows that there are clear advantages to be gained by synchronising ad placement across TV, digital and mobile.”
InMobi’s research also found that it is tablet rather than smartphone users who are the most regular online shoppers, with around 69% having shopped via their device in the last month. More than a fifth are shopping less in physical stores since buying their tablet—thanks in large part to the bigger screen, which makes browsing easier. Smartphones, by contrast, are used more for planning—which suggests they might be the more crucial platform for restaurant and pub operators to be on.
InMobi advises brands to distinguish between platforms. “There is a real danger that mobile connected devices are viewed all together as just another digital channel. However, savvy media planners will recognise that each type of device offers a unique opportunity.” Marketing teams also need to better contextualise their offers by using location data, and to give browsers the kind of content they want. “Consumers already rely on their mobile devices to search out and buy from their favourite brands. The question now is: are brands ready for them?”
For the full story, see Consumers and their mobile devices.