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What will generate buzz at CTIA Wireless 2011 in Orlando?

CTIA Wireless

Show floor at CTIA Wireless

With the wireless world set to descend on Orlando, FL, for the International CTIA Wireless 2011 conference, here is a look at the expectations of attendees, exhibitors, panelists and keynote speakers for which mobile marketing topics will create the most buzz at the show.

The Monday sessions focus on mobile marketing and promotion—panelists will include individuals from AT&T, Microsoft, Digitas, Converseon, Dial Plus, Grapple Mobile, Playphone, Dada, WAU Movil, TIM w.e., Mogreet, PureBros, Denuo, Compete, Turner Networks, Haneke Design and GEM Strategy with a keynote address by Alex Hall, chief marketing officer and president of the Americas at TigerSpike, New York. Mobile marketing should be front and center throughout the conference.

“I’m expecting more SoLoCo—social, location, commerce—enablers and ideas at CTIA this year,” said Matt Hull, vice president of product marketing and operations at AT&T Advanced Ad Solutions, New York.

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“Privacy seems to be the hot issue in digital marketing and it is making its way to mobile due to its personal nature,” he said.

“I expect to see increased activity and participation from non-traditional players like auto manufacturers and retailers.”

Steve Largent

Steve Largent is CEO of CTIA-The Wireless Associaton

Here is what other movers and shakers in the mobile industry expect to generate buzz at CTIA 2011:

Jamie Wells, director of global trade marketing and mobile media at Microsoft, Redmond, WA
Primarily, I’m looking forward to connecting with our advertiser customers and ecosystem partners, on current and emerging ecosystem challenges, as well as prospective solutions.

That, and of course, I fully expect some high-intensity nighttime activities if this CTIA will live up to the high bar set by MTV last time it was held in Orlando, where Three 6 Mafia put a whole new meaning to the phrase “pinch and zoom.”

Location and commerce-based solutions are finally gaining real traction and will likely dominate much of the activity around the show, building off of what we saw at SXSW.

As appmania begins to cool, I’d expect to see more hand-wringing about how to handle tablets - whether they are more “mobile-like” or “PC-like” in terms of consumer usage and marketing opportunity, while my guess is that NFC will probably continue to be in the “novel interest” category, with more trials and tests than actual news about learnings and scale deployments.

Chia Chen, senior vice president and North America mobile practice lead at Digitas, New York
We're really excited to see the various efforts by mobile exhibitors that will help unlock potential marketing and advertising opportunities due to the increased bandwidth, mobile payments and access to new types of consumer data.

There will be a great deal of discussion surrounding the possible marketing opportunities that may evolve within an NFC-enabled future.

That includes how the major, and fragmented, players within this space such as the carriers, handset manufacturers, banks, payment providers, etcetera, will work together to drive consumer adoption of these services to achieve the scale that marketers and advertisers so desire. It's not going to be easy.

Mobile commerce and NFC will undoubtedly continue along their buzz trains at this show—however, we expect that the related topic of virtual commerce to pick up steam as many marketers are looking to drive more tangible outcomes from their social marketing efforts.

Michael Becker, San Francisco-based managing director of North America at the Mobile Marketing Association
This is a great year for mobile. All the signs are pointing toward ever-increasing consumer and business use of the medium. 

Consumers are expanding their use of mobile not just for personal communications, but also to interact with the marketplace for a wide range of purposes and under a myriad of engagement models.

For example, from a marketing perspective, they are using mobile to make informed purchasing decisions.

Moreover, we’re seeing new innovations—both technical and business models—of the mobile medium, such as in-person to application engagements. These are exciting times.

CTIA Wireless is one of the most important shows to attend if you want to have the opportunity to see, hear and experience the latest trends in what mobile has to offer, and how mobile can be used to extend the customer and business engagement even farther than where it is today.

Also, it is an ideal opportunity to catch up with industry colleagues and meet new players.

The biggest issue is education.

The MMA is focusing on continuing to deliver mobile marketing educational materials globally—that is, education surrounding mobile and mobile marketing elements that are universally applicable across all regions and market sectors—as well as focusing on regionalized education—that is, education that focuses on the unique nuances of mobile marking within specific geographies and market sectors.

In addition to education, messaging and advertising standards are being updated and refined to address the latest innovations and engagement models in the market.

Moreover, we, along with many parties in the industry, are focusing on new policy issues, like consumer privacy, and we’re looking to ensure the industry maintains its stance on the imperative of responsible consumer engagement.

Beyond the immediate hot topics—education, standards and policy—there are many new innovating technologies and business models that are emerging.

This clearly shows a trend toward mobile being the connective tissue that bridges traditional and digital marketing practice practices, which I've recently referred to as “Marketing’s Meeting of Waters.”

Jen Snyder, president of The mGive Foundation, Denver
I definitely think that mobile giving will be at the forefront of people’s minds at CTIA.

The show is an opportunity to educate the broader community so that stakeholders know if they want to support disaster relief, how they can do so easily.

CTIA is an opportunity to explain and educate people about how mobile donation offerings could be used by other wireless companies to enable them to have a solution to encourage their constituents or customers to help.

By promoting a call-to-action—text a keyword to a short code—companies can encourage people to help the charities supporting Japan as much as they can.

Jim Manis, CEO and chairman of the Mobile Giving Foundation, Issaquah, WA
At CTIA this year, I’m expecting heightened attention to the medium for starters.

For the first time, there is a dedicated panel discussion at the show to highlight how text-to-give campaigns operate, their value in increasing donor engagement and immediately helping those in need, when and where mobile giving works most effectively and the benefits to the non-profit community throughout North America.

In addition, we’ll address the critical factors that will determine the long-term success of mobile giving.

I’ve always seen mobile giving as a truly meaningful way for the wireless industry to give back while reinforcing the values of trust and integrity between the brand/carrier, charity and customer. We hope to emphasize this point at the show.

From a mobile giving perspective, we’ve been focused on working with the players in the mobile-giving ecosystem to create more cohesive regulatory efforts to lessen negative consumer experiences and to ensure the integrity of the channel.

Mobile giving is and should be rooted in philanthropy, the principals of transparency and donor empowerment, and a business model that pushes value to the charity and the services it provides.

Chris Collins, director of wireless devices, technology and entertainment at Compete, Boston
I’m hoping that NFC starts to really generate some more momentum, because I think now we’re going to start to see more NFC-enabled devices. The challenge was always getting the NFC chips actually in the devices, and I think we’re now at a point where that piece will be robust enough that the rest of the ecosystem will be developed.

That has implications for payments, but also for marketing and loyalty, a whole host of things that go beyond the payment aspect.

I’m excited to go to CTIA. My expectations are fairly modest, because we had a lot of big announcements at CES, which you could argue has become a bigger wireless event than even CTIA is.

Subsequent to that, Apple, HP and others go outside of the big shows to do announcements. I’m not expecting that there will be a ton of huge news coming out of this.

However, the wireless industry, which has always been strong, is getting even stronger.

I’m looking forward to hearing about apps that actually impact people’s lives.

The last thing I would say is 4G—I hope we continue to hear about more new 4G devices and about how the carriers will be evolving their networks over time.

James Citron, president/CEO of Mogreet, Los Angeles
This is the first year CTIA is putting mobile marketing and commerce on the conference agenda in a big way, with a whole day of sessions at the Mobile Marketing & Promotion symposium on Monday, March 21.

This should draw in marketers, brands, agencies and others who have not traditionally attended CTIA.

Mogreet will be there, and I will be presenting case studies from leading marketers who use mobile as part of an integrated program for direct marketing and CRM.

This is part of my mission, to educate mobile marketers of the world on how to build an interactive relationship with their customers via mobile to stay relevant, by taking advantage of the next generation of mobile messaging—video.

More broadly, consumer privacy is one of the hottest issues in our industry right now, and I think we’ll see a lot of discussion and debate at the show and there will likely be some buzz around new mobile marketing apps and services launched at CTIA.

Sprint is also rumored to be making a big announcement at a Tuesday press conference, and we’re anxious to hear what that will be and how it might impact mobile marketing.

CTIA has just selected Mogreet for its mobile marketing platform and we’re expecting to get some great exposure for our platform at the show.

This is the first time that CTIA will send text (SMS) and video (MMS) alerts to promote their events and deliver news to subscribers, powered by Mogreet.

Anyone can text CTIA to 21534 to receive text, picture, and video content pertaining to International CTIA Wireless events directly on their mobile devices for their next three events—CTIA Wireless 2011 in Orlando, CTIA Enterprise & Applications in San Diego and CTIA Wireless 2012 in New Orleans.

Through our meetings and discussions with clients, partners and vendors in Orlando, we are also expecting to get a better sense of their accomplishments, questions, gaps and ideas for mobile video in 2011. 

Vanessa Daly, marketing communications manager at Bango, Cambridge, England
We expect a lot of the discussions will be focused on the mobile applications and mobile payment market.

With mobile phones becoming the mobile wallet of the 21st century, companies have realized that mobile is shaping the way consumers interact with their brands and that they need to innovate to stay engaged with their customers.

As a mobile billing and mobile analytics company, we’re looking forward to taking part in these discussions and provide advice to businesses that are new to mobile or want to further develop their mobile presence.

With the arrival of tablets, smartphones, ebook readers and other mobile devices, the question of how brands will be able to engage with consumers effectively on multiple devices is one that we believe will be addressed.

Monetization and implementing mobile marketing to target users on these new devices introduces some challenges in terms of “What are the best mobile payment methods that will make it easier for users to engage and pay for content?”

“How can brands measure the performance of their mobile marketing campaigns on multiple devices accurately?”

Brands need to be made aware of these issues before investing resources on these devices so they can make an informed decision.

Alex Vratskides, CEO of Upstream, London
There seems to be a dramatic expansion in the attention paid to mobile marketing at the show, with a wide and varied range of seminars on mobile advertising, app and app store strategies, location, retail and presence, mobile browsing and search, mobile video and social networking.

The show has evolved from an infrastructure-, mobility- and devices-focused event to incorporate mobile marketing in an unprecedented way.

As one of the leading mobile-marketing companies in the world, this evolution is wonderful to see.

Effectiveness within mobile marketing will be a top discussion point and, to this end, issues around using mobile as a direct marketing versus brand advertising tool will be hot.

We believe that mobile is the greatest direct response medium ever created.

However, you only have limited contact opportunities with customers, so effectiveness is vital.

The key to optimal effectiveness will be highly targeted, customer data- and context-driven direct response marketing via mobile that delivers few but very high-impact propositions/pitches through promotions, loyalty programs, offers, coupons, etcetera.

We see this understanding among mobile operators and brands gaining momentum in the U.S., and that evolution will be reflected at the show.

Sean Rosenberg, New York-based managing director of U.S.A. at Grapple Mobile
In addition to more tablet and smartphone device announcements, I expect RIM and HP to reposition their newest mobile devices against Apple and Google. 

The hottest topics will come from the carrier and OEM keynote addresses that will likely contain updates on 4G penetration, smartphone usage and mobile content behavior.

The continued discussion of native apps versus the promise of HTML5 will continue to generate case studies to support each technology.

Final Take
CTIA "Command"

 
Related content: Associations, CTIA, The Wireless Association, CTIA Wireless 2011, CTIA Wireless Orlando, Matt Hull, ATT Mobility, ATT Advanced Ad Solutions, Jamie Wells, Microsoft, Chia Chen, Michael Becker, MMA, Mobile Marketing Association, Jen Snyder, mGive, mGive Foundation, Jim M

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