by Mark Haviland, md with Rakuten LinkShare UK
Mobile World Congress Barcelona has morphed from a telecoms sector-specific trade show in years past to an industry event that has implications for everything digital. From retail, music and entertainment to gaming and social networking, smartphones and tablets are ubiquitous and many are waiting to hear how the latest apps, handsets and periphery technology will improve their everyday lives. The retail sector in particular has benefited from advancements in the mobile technology, and here are my three trends in the mobile shopping space which should cause a stir in 2013.
1 Augmented Reality (AR). Retailers are joining up the online and offline shopping conversations augmented reality apps such as Blippar or Aurasma.
Working together, publishers and advertisers can add a layer of mobile engagement to offline content.
For example, a fashion magazine could use augmented reality next to an article on ‘Spring Fashion Trends’ to offer readers that hover over the code with their smartphone a video tutorial on how to pair outfits and a 30 per cent discount from a high street store.
2 Location Based Offers. Using publisher apps, shoppers that have enabled geo-tracking can receive timely offers from brands when they check into or pass certain locations.
Imagine for a moment you are wandering past a restaurant and receive a push notification from a publisher’s app offering you a free dessert with any main meal.
Credit for the sale would then be passed on to the publisher involved.
3 Social Discovery Sites. Shoppers increasingly seek shopping advice and recommendations from friends and experts across the social web – especially when killing time on the move.
Provided brands are transparent with links and offers, content sharing and discovery sites such as Spotify or Motilo will become major drivers of sales conversions in affiliate.
Motilo is a social discovery site that lets users browse the latest fashion from a range of designers.
Users can then add their favourite dress to their virtual closet. Motilo can even style a shopper based on their closet and all products can of course be purchased through the site.
Mark Haviland is md with Rakuten LinkShare UK. Mark is responsible for the growth and development of the Rakuten LinkShare UK network. His company provides both client services for advertisers and support for new and existing publishers. Having worked in Tokyo and Paris, Mark has over fifteen years of international marketing and sales management experience and has built successful teams at leading companies including Walt Disney and most recently, CNN.