Top Mobile Applications and Services for Engaging Customers

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Location-based services can improve service delivery, customer support, and work force and marketing effectiveness. Gartner is already seeing the convergence of location functionality with social networking, news, information, search and entertainment services and expects almost 800 million location-based service users worldwide by the end of 2012. Revenue generated by consumer location-based services is forecast to reach $13.5 billion in 2015, of which advertising will be the dominant contributor. Applications that will generate the highest interest in the near term will be navigation, location search and friend finder/social networks. 

"Aided by a recovery in overall ad spending, the mobile advertising category has accelerated its evolution during the past year, despite lingering issues, such as privacy, metrics and standards. We expect the mobile advertising market to more than double during the next two years and to increase twelvefold by 2015 to $20.6 billion worldwide; or about four percent of total ad expenditures," said Mike McGuire, research vice president at Gartner. "This growth is being driven by robust adoption of smartphones and media tablets, and their increasing use as all-purpose information, entertainment and social networking devices." 

Mobile social networks, mobile applications stores and location-based services will be three of the highest value mobile services to reach widespread adoption in the next two years, according to Gartner, Inc. Digital marketing leaders who do not yet have strategies in place to exploit these opportunities need to take steps to develop them now. 

Gartner also expects mobile advertising to reach mainstream in the next two to five years, and digital marketers should keep a watchful eye on three key technologies in this field: bar code marketing, mobile coupons and augmented reality. 

"Consumer services and applications that consumers use when online — whether they're on the move, at work or at home — involve various devices which are often used interchangeably for common uses such as streaming video, shopping, banking or engaging social networks," said Sandy Shen, research director at Gartner. "Understanding how consumers are using these devices is an important element of understanding mobile's benefits and risks. Mobile technology is the vehicle of immediacy, putting mobile marketers in the critical position of being masters of timing — knowing when and how to drop the right offer at the right time." 


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