Exciting Times For Mobile Marketers In India!


Lately, there has been a surge across various dimensions  of the mobile ecosystem which resulted in the need for a comprehensive report covering the mobile marketing arena. After understanding the requirement of the marketers, the report was prepared by MMA in collaboration with GroupM, Madhouse and other partners.


Mumbai: It is not just 2016 but 2015 had been exciting as well for mobile marketing in India due to increase in 3G and 4G penetrations. In mobile advertising, native and video formats ruled the space, states Mobile ecosystem and sizing report India 2016.

In another report, it was stated that the ad spends on mobile media is estimated to be Rs 4,200 crore by the end of 2016, and is expected to grow to Rs 10,000 crore by end of 2018.
In 2015, the mobile ad spends stood at Rs 2,600 crore and this year (2016) it has grown more than 1.6 times, states Kantar IMRB & MMA Smartphone usage and behaviour report. “Primetime on mobile will continue to rise – an opportunity to transform the way brands is built,” said Preeti Desai, Country Manager, Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) India. The largest contributors to this growth were FMCG, e-commerce and auto.

The consumer has shifted to mobile with significant time spent per day on the medium (increased to 178 minutes in 2016), higher than any other digital / mass medium. This has led to mobile becoming a significant share of the total digital ad spends.

The reason for this growing fondness towards mobile marketing is also driven by the increase in use of mobile in the ‘rural media-dark market’, the mobile report added. This fact can be supported by the figure that in last 5 years, the rural teledensity in India has increased 60 per cent and rural mobile internet subscriber saw a 90 per cent year-on-year growth in 2015. It is not hidden that growing number of people are relying on mobile internet to connect to the virtual (online) world.

MMA report revealed that India surpassed all expectations and reached 306 million mobile internet users in December 2015. Urban mobile internet userbase saw a growth of 71 per cent year-on-year. On the other hand, the mobile internet userbase in rural India grew faster at 93 percent to reach 87 million at the end of December 2015, compared to a year ago. In the next five years, industry experts anticipate 2G to decrease by 3 folds and 3G to grow by 4 folds. On the other hand, LTE growth is said to be 40x times.

According to the mobile report, the global mobile connections surpassed the global human population. If reports are to be believed by 2021, the global mobile connections will increase by almost 30 per cent to 9.1 billion. With regards to mobile connections, India and China are competing as both countries have crossed one billion mobile connections in 2015 and 2012 respectively. Last year alone, India added over 60 million new mobile subscribers which meant every month 5 million subscribers were added on an average. However, India has become the fastest growing country in comparison to China in terms of new mobile subscribers. The report further throws light on India’s growth compared to global growth. In the future, India will grow at the rate of 15 per cent, compared to the global average of 5 per cent to reach 1.2 billion mobile subscribers by 2020. On cannot forget to mention the impact of Reliance Jio in the ecosystem. The mobile report by MMA is expecting Idea and Reliance Jio to grow in the coming year with aggressive price offerings and driven by their 4G strategies.

Going forward, mobile (smartphone) as a device will give some serious competition to TV sets. It is stated that by 2030 penetration per household of smartphones will also exceed colour TV sets. This shift is seen due to variety amount of content that is available through the small screen. For instance, Youtube India over the last one year witnessed a growth of 80 per cent in watch time and 55 per cent of the watch time was on mobile.

Apps are also going to benefit from changing mobile consumption habits. OTT (Over the top) video / audio streaming applications which are heavily depend on data, had also been driving the growth in mobile internet. The report stated that this has further led to mobile internet growing three folds in the last two years and this growth trend is expected to continue over the next 2 years as well. It is estimated that revenues from paid apps in India will reach USD 318 million by 2016 due to increase in app usage on smartphones. As of now, 95 per cent of mobile apps are free and share of paid apps are likely to be lower. One cannot overlook, the substantial growth travel apps (including ride-hailing apps) witnessed in 2015. It is the fastest growing category with a growth of over 100 per cent.

This growth was driven by the competition between various cab services, as well as increased popularity of travel-booking apps. The role of OTT category (entertainment) will be significant in 2016, in paid and free app category.

“Mobile is already supporting TV advertising in-terms of targeting the TV audience with beacon technology to maximise reach while the consumers are on both screens at the same time.” Competition in the video space has intensified significantly beyond the leading players. It now includes everyone from traditional TV broadcasters/ distributors to international video on demand players.


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