With the latest developments in mobile technology, Smartphone’s have become a hot commodity for mobile users. They offer ease of use, all new mobile experiences and specialised development and platform design. Moreover, Smartphones also entail a vast range of applications for customer use. However, do these traits and the release of thousands of applications make for practical and efficient marketing tools? Are Mobile applications taking the place of Mobisites?
Although one might initially presume this question can be answered with statistical analysis, the answer is in fact far simpler to come by. By looking at various aspects vital to mobile marketing, we can better answer the question by not only suggesting where the current status quo lies, but also the likelihood of it changing. One of the major steps at the very heart of any successful mobile campaign is clearly determining a target demographic. Specifying a specific target audience is vital for the entire design aspect of a mobile marketing campaign and is heavily influenced by the receptiveness of mobile users and their devices. If marketers wish to embrace a sleek and fresh user experience for their audience, then they need look no further than mobile applications. Their platform specific design allows for smooth use and some mind blowing features.
However, because the applications are designed specifically for a single platform, i.e. iPhone, Blackberry, Android, marketers run the risk of excluding a large percentage of their target audiences. Designing the application for each of the major Smart-devices also poses inefficient cost effectiveness for a single campaign and so applications present a bit of a problem in terms of scope. On the other hand, mobisites can be accessed via any mobile device allowing marketers to design the site with their focus solely on engaging their audience and not on specific platform capabilities.
As well as possessing a superior ability to target a large proportion of a campaigns target audience, mobisites also offer much cheaper running costs. A campaign may very well want to run on a Mobile app, but marketers have to consider the cost of hiring platform programmers for each specific device, and the on-going costs and hassle of updating the application when the device receives a software update. Mobisites, as we have seen, run on a variety of platforms that require a single, and relatively cheap, designer. This means marketers cannot only focus on engaging their target audience, but can do so with the assurance that they are maximising cost effectiveness.
The answer then is simple; mobisites possess a much higher level of functionality and practicality for a mobile marketing campaign. So much so that analysts predict that as mobile increases focus on functionality, mobile applications will become increasingly obsolete. Mobisites offer the convenience and reach that both marketers and customers look for in their mobile use and so applications are in no way taking the place of mobisites.
Are Mobile applications taking the place of Mobisites?