At the Crossroads of Mobile and Social Among High-End Home Brands

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messagingIt’s time for marketers to anticipate what’s next.

 

Despite the misguided belief among some high-end marketers that digital strategies aren’t the most ideal way to connect with prospective consumers, the facts are that affluents are digitally savvy.

More and more affluents are sharing ideas and opinions online as their use of social media and the size of their networks increase. According to Scorpio Partnership, the top social media sites for affluent consumers are Facebook (71%), YouTube (48%), Google+ (37%), LinkedIn (31%), and Twitter (29%). Equally of note is the fact that 55% of affluent consumers use social networking apps on their mobile devices.

Let’s face it: right now, affluent consumers are active on digital, mobile and social platforms. They are conducting research, sharing opinions and yes, even making purchases of luxury goods and services. If your high-end brand is solidly invested in mobile and social at this moment, then you are ahead of the curve.

But how do we anticipate what’s next?

Forrester’s Thomas Husson has some interesting thoughts on the growing importance of messaging apps – and the need for marketers to continue evolving in order to meet consumers where they are.

“Messaging apps have the potential either to become digital platforms or to significantly enhance the power of current platforms because they so clearly deliver the three things that determine digital platform power: frequent interactions, emotional connection, and convenience,” says Husson, calling these apps the “new face of social in a mobile context.”

Husson makes the distinction between the one-to-many broadcast communications of most social media and the private, one-to-one communications tool of a messaging app, optimized for mobile. I think that this distinction is important, as mobile’s share of digital engagement continues to grow.

“Mobile allows users to seamlessly merge social offline experiences with online communications; offers more instantaneous and emotional forms of social communications; and provides users new ways to manage identities,” says Husson.

It may be time for you to consider how your brand might capitalize on this growing phenomenon. Is there a way to engage with consumers in a manner relevant to your brand? If so, how might you add value to the user experience by integrating location-based services, commerce and payment systems?

It’s worth some quiet time for you to reflect on these questions. A great way to start is to invest one hour this week checking out these apps: KakaoTalk, Kik, Line, Secret, Snapchat, Tango, Viber or Whisper. It’s a start in the right direction.

Chris Ray

Chris Ray is founding editor of Upward Home, an online resource for marketers of high-end home brands.
Find more information from Chris on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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