Australian marketers are thinking mobile last, according to CEO at Mnet Mobile Travis Johnson.
The Sydney-based exec of the mobile solutions agency, who is the former commercial director at IPG Mediabrands, said the trouble with the Australian mobile space is that the brands, marketers and the general industry only “think” they are ahead in this space and a lot of mobile activity is often “accidental”.
“There's not a lot of real mobile tech innovations going on across Australia. There's a lot of theory out there but not many things are actually happening,” Johnson said.
“What a lot of brands are doing in mobile is accidental – hardly anyone is planning mobile campaigns or are truly thinking mobile first. Marketers are thinking mobile last if anything – not to mention that when budgets need to be cut, mobile is the first to be chopped from the media schedule.”
By accidental mobile Johnson means brands are just re-purposing desktop/website content, without considering how this translates on mobile and without a second thought about how to really create something innovative for mobile users.
“Advertisers seem slow to get ahead in mobile innovations and I am not sure why,” he added.
“The metrics are different with mobile and work needs to be done to cater to this so perhaps it falls into the 'too hard' basket for them.”
Johnson, who agreed that modern day marketers have a lot on their plate with programmatic and digital, said while more innovation is needed in this space, it's no mean feat. He also said he's surprised mobile solutions companies have not opened in Australia.
Mnet was responsible for creating and launching Kia's interactive tennis game which allowed people to return high-speed tennis serve live from a TV using their smart phone as a racket. The real-time TV game, only available once the app is downloaded, was claimed as a world first during this year's Australian Open.
Mnet invested $150,000 in developing the app, with 17 of its 35 staff involved. It also owns the patent.
Johnson also noted that surprisingly, some clients actually prefer to operate on a licensing fee approach, rather than a cost-per-download.
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