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The crawl, walk, run, fly approach for doing mobile right

The crawl, walk, run, fly approach for doing mobile right Michael Weaver

A lot of marketers are "doing mobile" -- but as part of something else as opposed to making "everything else" a part of mobile. Approaching it this way means failing to do mobile with intent and purpose in a world that's completely driven by mobile. In 2015, mobile received the highest percentage of digital ad spend it's ever had, at 52.4 percent, with roughly $30.45 billion dollars spent. In the next four years, 45 percent of total e-commerce is expected to transact on mobile, generating roughly $284 billion dollars in sales. Are you, dear marketer, planning to share in this pool of revenue? If yes, then you need to change the way you're doing mobile. Here's an approach that can help.

The crawl, walk, run, fly approach

If you're already "doing mobile," what's to follow might knock you back a few pegs. Because while you may already be at, say, the "Run" phase, if you didn't complete the "Crawl" and "Walk" phases correctly, you likely aren't really getting the most out mobile. You need to do each step effectively to maximize mobile and reap the biggest rewards. Here is a breakdown of each phase and the questions to ask yourself and your business to get on the right path.


Treat mobile as a different channel, not necessarily an extension of display. Optimize media buying/marketing tactics to purposefully reach consumers on the right mobile device using mobile-specific creative units.

Questions to ask:
- Are your ad creatives optimized for mobile devices?
- Are you comparing display versus mobile performance and optimizing accordingly?


Identify and specifically target consumers based on mobile-specific characteristics, such as app IDs (supply whitelist), location, and second-party data, including weather. Execute campaigns against mobile-specific outcomes like app downloads and mobile commerce.

Questions to ask:
- Are you targeting audiences on mobile using mobile-specific characteristics?
- Are your mobile campaigns tied to true mobile outcomes?


Combine location and context in your strategy. Deploy hyper-local geo-targeting using a combination of audience data and location ("business travelers" while at an airport or conquesting consumers in real time while near a competitor's store), or based on historical location and behavioral data such as commuting route.

Questions to ask:
- Are you delivering ad messaging to your targeted audience(s) in the most contextually relevant and real-time way(s)?


Leverage the most advanced location and behavioral targeting features and technology, such as beacons, and implement a true attribution solution to determine the efficacy of online ad spend to offline purchase activity. For instance, consider targeting moviegoers via beacons with a restaurant coupon and measuring lift of food sales.

Questions to ask:
- Do you have a total understanding of how mobile is influencing your marketing strategy and outcomes?
- Are you calculating mobile's true ROAS as a primary channel in your media mix?

Understanding the medium your target customers are using should drive implementation, strategy and measurement of what you do -- and you must measure mobile outcomes. This takes you from just "doing mobile" to doing mobile right.

Michael Weaver is a seasoned programmatic industry leader and innovator, bringing over two decades of digital advertising experience to MediaMath. He is responsible for guiding MediaMath’s mobile advertising efforts across programmatic media...

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