The Explosion of Mobile “Pay” Products & What it Means for Mobile Marketing

Exiting a taxi, checking out at a pharmacy, picking up dinner from the local deli — Pay is everywhere.

It seems that nearly every day a new “Pay” product is being introduced into the marketplace. The term “Pay” was made popular by Apple, when it rolled out its mobile payment solution, Apple Pay, with the release of the iPhone 6. Not to be outdone, Samsung soon followed with Samsung Pay. Google, who was really the first company to try their hand at a mobile wallet, branded their own solution as … you guessed it, Android Pay. Then came Chase Pay, Walmart Pay, LG Pay… the list goes on.

So what does this mean for mobile marketing?

All of the big players are firmly behind mobile payments and are trying to be a part of the momentum shift toward mobile commerce. So as consumers start using these various options to use their mobile phones as a credit card (which admittedly has been a bit slower than expected), mobile marketers must then consider how they can engage, motivate and influence consumers while the consumers are using their phones to shop and make purchases.

Much has been said about loyalty and couponing — and those are the traditional strategies that marketers and brands usually consider first within the mobile commerce channel. But I do think the industry is ripe for some new, creative ways to engage their customers while they shop, talk, and interact with each other in the digital, and increasingly mobile, world. And to support this, a recent research report released by Accenture noted that more shoppers are demanding more retail services via mobile, yet retailers are failing to meet these expectations. According to that report, the number of consumers heading out to shop armed with a mobile device grew 10% in twelve months; December 2015 alone saw a 4% increase from 36% to 40%. Here are some more interesting stats from that report:

• the number of shoppers who want real-time in-store promotions grew from 40% in 2014 to 47% by the end of 2015
• nearly a third (32%) of shoppers want the ability to scan products in-store, up from 27% in 2014

With this kind of growing demand from shoppers, coupled with the rise in the multitude in Pay products, the opportunities are expanding for marketers to create mobile moments and personalized customer experiences.

Robert P. Sabella
NFC Bootcamp & AccelerateNFC

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