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How a mobile-first attitude generates quality leads

September 27, 2016

Anthony Nicalo is vice president of platform at Mobify

Anthony Nicalo is vice president of platform at Mobify

By Anthony Nicalo

The days of cheap or free customer acquisition are over. Google ads are highly competitive, Facebook is pay-to-play, and Instagram ads are here to stay. And now Snapchat has launched an enormous advertising push aimed at increasing its annual revenue from $59 million to $1 billion by the end of 2017.

It is no coincidence that all of these platforms are mobile-first.

Marketing revenue is the bread and butter for each of these companies, and the success of their advertising initiatives depends on their ability to quantify ROI for brands.

Lead quality is a critical component of A/B testing, as larger amounts of low-quality leads provide a false sense of security.

Mobile devices are inherently useful tools for measuring lead quality, as their bevy of sensors, personal data and usage information provides more real-time lead information than ever before imagined.

The critical metric for marketers in all industries is customer lifetime value. Of course, first you need to know how to determine and boost that.

Quality before quantity
Tracking and improving lead quality requires a three-step approach to create a strong sales funnel that supports your conversion rate optimization efforts.

1. Focus on trending mobile channels
People spend a disproportionate percentage of their mobile time in just a few popular applications: Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat.

Connecting with customers in these moments is not only important for meeting their needs, but it is also critical for growing revenue.

While Instagram users are 113 percent more likely to purchase clothing via mobile than the average shopper, 72 percent of respondents to a recent consumer survey still reported that they gave up on a mobile experience because initiating contact proved too difficult.

So every click-through to your brand needs to land on a mobile-optimized page.

If you are spending on paid advertisements or your own marketing efforts on Instagram, the follow-up experience must be great on mobile.

Beyond getting your own mobile storefront in order, you can use one of many tools to improve the Instagram shopping experience.

Facebook is also turning its mobile-focused Messenger application into a conversational commercial platform, offering a great way to provide mobile support and turn leads into conversions.

2. Use smart backlinks
Snapchat now supports a version of shoppable ads where swiping in an ad or discovery channel brings up the brand’s mobile page within the app.

PopSugar and other platforms are already using it, and even affiliate ads such as Warby Parker’s have done well on the platform.

Gatorade won the Super Bowl using Snapchat filters that allowed users to dump virtual coolers of Gatorade over video selfies. The innovative marketing opportunities available on these mobile social networks surpass even television and radio these days.

If you want quality leads, do not make potential customers jump through hoops.

Engage them seamlessly on the channels that they are already in to make their leap to transaction painless. Connect the dots instead of offering a jarring introduction to your marketing funnel.

Focus on individual interactions instead of marketing campaigns. Micro-moments are what fuel today’s data-driven marketing initiatives.

3. Track your leads
In a mobile-first world where 90 percent of sales still happen in bricks-and-mortar stores, you need to track leads and attribute mobile to in-store revenue.

Although attribution technology is improving, we are still waiting for the Holy Grail of digital pixel to in-store purchase tracking.

Facebook’s local awareness ads come close, however.

With offline attribution and store visit tracking, the social network can estimate foot traffic to stores, allowing businesses to import data to their customer relationship marketing or point-of-sale systems with its offline conversion API.

PlaceIQ, Cintric and Foursquare’s Place Insights provide lead quality measurement tools beyond standard Google Analytics as well.

EVERYWHERE CONSUMERS go, they want to learn, do and buy.

These micro-moments occur throughout everyone’s lives, and marketers have always dreamed of being able to approach the right person at just the right time to make a sale.

Now, with the ubiquity of mobile devices, a mobile-first marketing attitude brings that dream closer than ever to reality.

Anthony Nicalo is vice president of platform at Mobify, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Reach him at

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