A worldwide recession and social media have swept up B2B marketers
in a perfect storm, tossed between tighter budgets and the demand to do
more online without guideposts or established benefits. Opportunities
and challenges abound for marketers targeting other businesses through
a direct sales force or channel partners. Before 2010 planning -- and
the push to pump up the pipeline to make year-end revenue goals -- hit
full stride, now is an excellent time to step outside your daily
routine, tune up B2B marketing strategy, and learn new best practices.
Sound intriguing? If so, have I got a deal for you! (Oh, c'mon, you suspected a pitch was coming, now didn't you?)
At the end of this year, Forrester expects mobile Internet penetration to reach 17% in Western Europe — the same adoption rate for the PC Internet a decade ago. At that time, mobile phone penetration was still below the 40% threshold and mobile shops were opening at every high-street corner. Companies were only starting to launch their web presence and to anticipate the impact of the Web. Operator-branded mobile Internet solutions would only launch 3 years after and 3G in 2003/2004.
10 years after, the mobile Internet is reaching critical mass and a virtuous mobile Internet cycle is kicking off. Consumers who have a flat-rate data bundle spend more and more time on the Internet from their mobile phones, brands begin to launch their mobile Web presence to monetize these growing audiences and engage with their customers via more relevant mobile content and services, which in turn attracts more and more consumers to unlimited mobile Internet tariffs.
The current economic climate will lengthen handset renewal cycles, foster the development of low-cost offerings, and boost the uptake of SIM-only contracts. Operators are likely to postpone major investments in new networks such as 4G / Long-Term Evolution, despite early trials and commercialization in the Nordics. However, it will only slightly reduce the pace of growth for those elements that stimulate mobile Internet usage: 3.5G and Internet-centric mobile phones as well as all-you-can-eat data plans will be widely available in the next five years. That's the reason why Forrester expects mobile Internet to grow to 39% by the end of 2014. That's a lower end point than for the PC Internet in 2004, but the growth curve per se looks quite the same.
If you're a marketer targeting Gen X consumers (which we define as consumers between 30 and 43), and you're not using social media or influence marketing, it's time to reevaluate your strategy. Our new report, Brands Should Reach Gen Xers Through Word Of Mouth, sheds some new light on these consumers and their use of social technologies.
Every once in a while, I come across one of those situations where the answer seems so obvious that I have to wonder if they already know the answer, but just want to know what you’re going to say.You know, like Perry Mason asking the question, but he already knows the answer?