The CMO Survey Mission

The CMO Survey collects and disseminates the opinions of top marketers in order to predict the future of markets, track marketing excellence, and improve the value of marketing in firms and in society.

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Mobile spend to increase 160% in three years

Read all August 2015 results including three different reports. Learn More

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Best Practice From Marketing Leaders

Interviews with CMOs offer insights into best practices in marketing strategy, organization, and metrics. Learn More

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The CMO Survey Award for Marketing Excellence

For the 7th consecutive time, Apple has been identified as the company that sets the standard for excellence in marketing across all industries. Learn More about industry winners.

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Mobile Spending to Increase 160% Despite Performance Questions

August 25, 2015

Marketing leaders report their companies currently spend 6% of marketing budgets on mobile marketing and that this investment level is expected to increase to 15.6% over the next three years. The CMO Survey reports this increase in newly released results from 255 marketing leaders.

This whopping 160% increase reflects a growing reliance on mobile to interact with customers where they look for information and make purchases. On top of it, companies hope to reach customers closer to the time of purchase in order to make them aware of offerings, deals, and additional information that may help close more sales.

Despite these hopes, marketing leaders report only modest success in the impact of mobile marketing activities. When asked to rate the performance of their company’s mobile marketing activities on a scale from 1-7 where 1=poorly and 7=excellent, Figure 1 shows the current gap with only customer engagement breaching the halfway mark, while delivering your brand message, customer acquisition, customer retention, sales, and profits all falling below average.

Figure 1. How Mobile Marketing Performs (7-point scale where 1=poor, 7=excellent)
2015-08_mobile-graph-1

Examining different sectors, Table 1 shows, on average, B2C companies outperform their B2B counterparts in getting returns from mobile. However, at the same time, no sector has any real advantages.

Table 1. Sector Performance on Mobile Marketing

The CMO Survey did not ask how marketing leaders plan to invest the huge increase in mobile spending over the next three years, but it is clear that allocating a large portion of it toward understanding and managing the impact of mobile is essential. As with other aspects of business, it is not the size of your budget that matters, but how you manage the investment to create and leverage critical customer, brand, and financial outcomes. Among the most important steps are fundamentals of marketing strategy, including selecting your target customer, developing and communicating a benefit that meets customers across all aspects of your marketing, including mobile, and then figuring how to reach and engage customers at the right time and in the most effective ways. Importantly, marketing leaders should not forget that poor mobile marketing can harm your brand and your relationships with customers.