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Mobile marketers must think globally by measuring behavior, not regions: report

Mobile marketers should not follow the same rules as more traditional integrated marketing departments who divide the world into clusters based on geography, but should apply learnings from across global markets to measure behavior rather than pre-defined regions, according to a new report from Fetch.

Marketers must not group mobile users into regions such as Europe, the Middle East and Africa, or North America, but by user behavior patterns, according to the report, ?Agile Planning for a Mobile World.? The takeaway is that marketers need to think about how they allocate budgets when planning mobile application-install campaigns since mobile is a deep and complex channel in itself, from apps to mobile Web, and deserves deeper study.

?Mobile is one of the fastest growing sectors but still nascent to some extent,? said Dan Wilson, head of data at Fetch, San Francisco, CA. ?To achieve maximum return on investment, you need data insights to identify app install trends.

?In 2015, it?s simply no longer enough to have a mobile strategy,? he said.

Proximity rules
Businesses traditionally group countries into regions as part of their business plan, based purely on location. 

The advent of mobile raises the question whether it is necessary to lump countries together just because they are near each other.

Regions differ in cost globally.

Marketers create more work for themselves by using the established regions. For example, challenges in the Chinese and Korean markets in the Asia and Pacific area are vastly different. 

Instead, markets should be grouped by how similar the method of reaching them is, allowing an account planner to better focus on the challenges present in? each market.

It is difficult to plan effectively in each region when the characteristics of the countries in the region are disparate. 

The report draws its conclusions from a three-month analysis of data across a wide range of media activity. 

It aimed to define new regions based on mobile data that are comprised of countries that can be approached in a similar manner.

The investigation looked into different clusters of countries with similar responsiveness to mobile advertising, finding vast differences in behavior within these groupings.

Bidding aggressively
Countries where users are expensive to acquire have high smartphone penetration and likely have more expendable income. These users are valuable so advertisers bid more aggressively for them.

Complex behavior abounds globally.

?Taking APAC [Asia and Pacific] as an example, it?s a hugely diverse and complex market known for the complexity of mobile device behaviors,? Mr. Wilson said. ?We know from our experience of planning across this region for Hotels.com that you simply cannot lump India together with Korea or Thailand to Japan because they?re completely different. 

?It?s a far smarter approach to look out for similarities in responsiveness to ads and group up markets that way to really get better results, so that account planner can focus on improving performance per market at a more granular level,? he said.

Final Take
Michael Barris is staff reporter on Mobile Marketer, New York