What Did We Learn About Mobile Marketing at SXSW?

What Did We Learn About Mobile Marketing at SXSWHaving spent ample time at SXSW 2014 over the last ten days in Austin, Texas, it was apparent that the future of digital advertising and mobile marketing are on the minds of many professionals across a wide array of industries.

Specifically, the fusion of technologies and platforms to allow for greater connectivity, convenience, and targeting of the mobile masses is most profoundly exciting.

“CMOs I spoke to [at SXSWi] are in a unique position because they’re now armed with data to help drive decision-making and support the budgets they require,” Sharam Fouladgar-Mercer, founder and CEO of AirPR, told Direct Marketing News in a recent interview.

“Tech decisions are being shifted to the CMO,” he adds. “Empower marketers and arm them with analytics and everybody wins. Resources don’t get wasted on lengthy integration cycles, decisions don’t get stalled because the CIO is buried in a thousand other tasks.”

Marketing, long an emotion-driven field, is increasingly becoming a Moneyball industry. Companies already are tapping consumers’ increasing appetite for mobile computing, using analytics such as click-through rates, social media activity, and location-based services to make educated guesses as to where we’re going to consume next.

From the first day of the South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi) conference to the last, mobile marketing and its latest strategies and resources were on the minds of countless attendees and presenters. But what did we actually learn about mobile marketing? One of the standout lessons from this year’s conference is that analytics will be hotter and more impactful than ever throughout 2014 and beyond.

“Analytics are critical for companies to create the best user experience for their consumers,” says Jonathan Godfrey, director of communications for the Association for Competitive Technology. “These metrics offer a more complete understanding of how people behave, helping to identify areas where improvements can be made. Analytics are also essential in areas like education marketplace, where parents and teachers alike seek to measure performance and developmental pace. Critical data improves the user experience, but this aggregated data shouldn’t be confused with personal information. When we look to improve apps, we want to know how the greatest number of people are using them, not one specific individual.”